Stay out, city boss tells parties

2012-02-10 00:00

MSUNDUZI’S new municipal manager, Mxolisi Nkosi, has said his team won’t be taking orders from political parties.

Outlining his plans for the next 12 months at a press briefing at the city hall yesterday, Nkosi said senior managers and staff should stop letting party politics interfere with their work, and focus on service delivery instead.

He said he would not take instructions from politicians outside the council, but would obey the Mayor, Chris Ndlela, his political head.

“Taking political instructions from a branch or regional member would be tantamount to digging my own grave because I will be taking instructions from too many political figures,” said Nkosi.

The roles of the administration and the politicians were clear, said Nkosi, and both parties should be careful not to cross the lines.

He said he was happy with his working relationship with Ndlela.

Political interference and divisions within the ANC in the council were among the reasons for the near-bankruptcy of the capital, which led to the council being placed under administration in 2010.

The municipal manager said his senior managers should act decisively against employees who use their political party membership to destabilise the municipality.

“If a junior employee does not do his job because he holds a political influence outside the municipality, the manager will have to take necessary action against the staff member. If the manager fails to do so then I will institute disciplinary action against the manager.”

Nkosi told journalists there were strong indications that Msunduzi and the municipalities in the uMgungundlovu District would become a second metro in KZN by 2016.

He vowed to fix the council’s financial challenges.

He stressed the need to fill all section 57 (strategic executive manager) posts by June, as all SEMs were in an acting capacity.

Nkosi listed as some of the positives for the council so far:

• The audit committee has filled all vacancies and has been holding regular meetings;

• Organisational performance management is being implemented;

• The Auditor-General has nominated the municipality as one of the pilot sites for the implementation of performance management strategy;

• The routine collection of waste has improved, with systems in place to monitor daily collection schedules.

NKOSI said the Independent Development Trust (IDT) had been appointed to diagnose Msunduzi’s electricity problems and report to the council within six weeks.

The IDT is an agency focusing on development planning and implementation and the co-ordination of government programmes.

Nkosi said an infrastructure investment plan had been developed to help the council decide how much needed to be budgeted in the next five financial years to replace ageing equipment. The total value of proposed investment is about R500 million.

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