Municipal officials hauled over the coals

2010-10-22 00:00

THERE will be no more golden handshakes for municipal officials who break the law, and no salary increases for under-performing mayors and councillors.

This is according to a directive from KZN MEC for Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta), Nomusa Dube, to all provincial municipalities.

Dube announced her hardline initiative yesterday at a closed meeting with mayors and municipal managers from 17 municipalities who have been fingered by Auditor-General Terence Nombembe in his latest assessment of municipal performance.

According to Dube’s spokesperson Vernon Mchunu, the municipal leadership “was being hauled over the coals” as part of the department’s strategy to improve service delivery by ensuring that local authorities comply with the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) and other municipal governance legislation.

“There are cases where you hear of a senior official in the municipality who has been paid millions of rands to leave the municipality simply because … their contract has not expired at the time when the municipality decides that he is no longer needed.

“Why simply pay him money without making them pay for the mess they have committed … At least let us hear that there is a court case because the council is refusing to pay someone who decided to leave now that they have squandered enough of public funds,” Dube said.

Also, the issue of perpetual salary increases when there is perpetual non-performance is now a “no-no”, she said.

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