“I declare war against fraud, corruption and maladministration and we will take action against councillors and officials who are found to be doing business with the municipality,” James Nxumalo said at the Durban City Hall on Monday afternoon, after being sworn in as the municipality's new mayor.
A forensic firm was appointed earlier this year to probe fraud, corruption and maladministration allegations in the municipality. Auditor General Terrence Nombembe's 2009/10 report indicated R532m had been spent irregularly in the municipality.
Nxumalo said strict measures would be put in place to ensure departments adhered to supply chain management processes. The municipality would also not allow officials to flout tender procedures.
He said he expected employees to work productively and passionately to improve the lives of residents.
The municipality would continue “the great track record of unqualified audits”.
He would convene a two-day workshop in August where the city’s "strategic framework" would be mapped out. Improving the city’s economy, providing jobs and ensuring the costs of public transport, housing and basic services were reduced, would be among subjects to be discussed.
Former deputy mayor Logie Naidoo was voted the municipality's new speaker on Monday. Executive committee member Nomvuzo Shabalala would fill the vacancy he left.
Naidoo got 134 votes to the beat the Democratic Alliance's Warwick Chapman, who got 44. The African Christian Democratic Party's speaker candidate Jonathan Naidoo managed to get three votes.
Speaking after he was sworn in, Naidoo said he would ensure the municipality was a leading council in South Africa.
“I will make sure that this council improves the lives of our people. I will make sure that service delivery is a priority.”