Ntola caused divisions: Union

By Drum Digital
21 May 2014

Sadtu says expelled SA Democratic Teachers' Union president Thobile Ntola is causing divisions.

Expelled SA Democratic Teachers' Union president Thobile Ntola caused divisions in the trade union, Sadtu said on Wednesday. "Ntola instigated members of Sadtu at a meeting in Bochabela in Free State to withhold their subscription fees to the union and demand his reinstatement after he was suspended," deputy general secretary Nkosana Dolopi told reporters in Johannesburg.

"He addressed union meetings even while he was suspended. His conduct caused divisions among union members."

On Monday, the union expelled Ntola after initiating a disciplinary hearing in March last year. Ntola never attended any of the scheduled hearings, Dolopi said.

Ntola was expelled for his inappropriate relationship with service providers, and not for allowing Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi to address a Sadtu conference in the Eastern Cape last year.

Vavi was suspended from the Congress of SA Trade Unions at the time.

"He knew that if he uses the Vavi issue he was bound to receive sympathy and hide his actions."

Vavi's suspension was lifted by the High Court in Johannesburg earlier this year and he returned to his post.

Dolopi said Ntola abused his position and used it for personal gain.

Among the alleged irregularities discovered was that one of the union's service providers was paying Ntola a R10,000 monthly allowance. The service provider disclosed this to the union, he said.

"That amount can be at least R300,000 if we calculate from when Ntola became president in 2010."

Ntola had private dealings with other service providers, including an insurance company that had allowed Ntola and his family to live in its R3.5 million property since 2011.

"Ntola blackmailed this service provider to provide him with a house, failing which its contract of doing business with Sadtu would be cancelled," Dolopi said.

Ntola received documentation notifying him of his expulsion on Monday.

He was replaced by Sadtu deputy president Magope Maphila.

Sadtu has been divided on Vavi, with some factions calling for his removal.

Ntola could not be reached for comment.


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