Another damning audio tape

2018-06-22 16:05
Msunduzi Municipal Manager Sizwe Hadebe. (File)

Msunduzi Municipal Manager Sizwe Hadebe. (File)

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Another damning audio recording featuring voices believed to be of Msunduzi’s managers went viral on Thursday.

The voices include City boss Sizwe Hadebe and deputy mayor Thobani Zuma, allegedly colluding on the appointment of the controversial former councillor Clive Lotz.

Other voices on the clip, which appears to be of a teleconference, are believed to belong to Msunduzi’s human resources specialist Xolile Hulane and the suspended head for infrastructure services Sabatha Nomnganga.

There is also mention of the general manager of corporate services Mosa Molapo and someone referred to as “the secretary”.

Nomnganga on Thursday confirmed he was one of the people who featured on the voice clip and was “being given instructions”.

It is suspected the recording was made in 2016 before Lotz was appointed as manager in the office of the Speaker, Jabu Ngubo.

The damning audio was leaked to The Witness a day after council resolved to appoint an investigator to probe allegations of corruption against Hadebe.

The inquiry stems from the April audio clip where a man alleged to be Hadebe was recorded meddling in the appointment of a senior manager and a tender process.

In the latest clip a man confirmed to be Nom­nganga asks a person whom he refers to as the “MM” if the candidate qualifies for the job.

A third voice, suspected to be of the deputy mayor, who is referred to as Mafahleni, also comes in asking for confirmation on the matter of qualification, which the MM provides, and reminds them that “this is a political instruction”.

The people then discuss whether the prerequisite for the position is a diploma and “Xoli” is asked to check if that is the case, which she says she will. It appears that both Nomnganga and Xoli had not seen the candidate’s CV before the teleconference but MM confirms that he has a copy.

“Is the secretary there?” asks the MM.

“What do you need the secretary for? If you make a mistake you will get all of us fired?” responds Mafahleni.

Xoli advises that the secretary should show but not give the candidate the letter, which is presumed to be a job offer.

The parties agree and Nomnganga commits to sign the letter. The call is then terminated but resumes seconds later with the MM and Mafahleni.

“Mafahleni your last comment was not right,” says the MM.

Mafahleni then laughs and asks him to clarify.

“The last question about whether he has qualifications and so forth, because this was a political instruction,” said the MM.

Mafahleni responds by saying that the candidate had already brought his CV and he has confirmed it with the secretary. He adds people are always scared because “this place has a bad history”.

“In future Xoli will be scared to do these things if there are such questions because there are already some concerns ...

“Even now I had to ask her because Mosa wouldn’t have done this thing. Mosa is still asking how are we to even start with such a letter because this person is still serving as councillor and has not resigned,” said the MM.

Mafahleni tries to assure him that everything is going as it should and the relevant people have been briefed.

“All I’m saying is that Mosa is Xoli’s boss ... we have to protect Xoli from Mosa but if we are going to ask the questions like the one you asked in front of her, she will be unwilling to help us like she did in future because this was in fact a political instruction,” said the MM.

Mafahleni cuts him off and says he has no reason to be scared because he has already spoken to Xoli. This seems to appease the MM.

Msunduzi and Hadebe had not commented at the time of publication.

Nomnganga: 'Yes that is definitely me'

Msunduzi’s suspended head for infrastructure services Sabatha Nomnganga confirmed that the voice on the clip is his after The Witness sent him the recording.

“Yes that is definitely me. I was taking instruction from the MM [Sizwe Hadebe] in the presence of the deputy mayor and the ANC regional secretary [Mzi Zuma],” he said.

Deputy mayor Thobani Zuma declined to comment.

The general manager of corporate services, Mosa Molapo, said she could not comment on the contents of the recording because she was not present during the teleconference.

“It makes sense that I was mentioned because I suspect that the conversation was at the time when human resources was part of my responsibilities,” she said.

When contacted, human resources specialist Xolile Hulane said she was driving, but when The Witness repeatedly tried to call her later her phone went straight to voicemail.

Attempts to get comment from Mzi Zuma were unsuccessful. — Witness Reporter.

FORMER DA Woodlands leader Clive Lotz resigned as the councillor for ward 32 and joined the ANC a month after the 2016 local government elections.

In December The Witness reported that Lotz had allegedly never arrived for work since his appointment in December 2016 as the manager in the office of the Speaker Jabu Ngubo.

DA councillor Melika Singh formally raised the issue of his appointment through a motion of notice in September.

In his January response, City manager Sizwe Hadebe said Lotz had been moved from the office of the speaker after “it subsequently became evident that he would best be utilised as manager [for the] Vulindlela joint management unit”.

Attempts to get comment from Lotz were unsuccessful.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  sizwe hadebe

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