Cogta places dysfunctional Ingwe Municipality under adminstration

2016-05-18 12:47
Nomusa Dube-Ncube. Picture: Jabulani Langa

Nomusa Dube-Ncube. Picture: Jabulani Langa

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Pietermaritzburg - Ingwe Municipality has been placed under administration by the KwaZulu-Natal Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Department (Cogta).

A statement released by the ­department on Tuesday, said Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube took the decision to place the municipality under curatorship following “political instability and infighting”. In February this year it was reported by the East Griqualand Fever that the ANC had recalled the mayor of the Ingwe Municipality in Creighton following allegations that she spent R50 000 allocated for a municipal ­developmental programme for funeral preparations of a relative.

The former Ingwe mayor, Nomagugu Lazulane, was also accused of dividing the council into two ANC factions. East Griqualand Fever reported in April that the Ingwe Municipality was supposed to have elected a new mayor and a speaker in March, however, divisions among councillors have caused the mayoral seat to remain empty since February.

Dube-Ncube said in the statement that the municipality had failed to elect office bearers to replace the former mayor and speaker and also failed to approve its integrated development plan and its budget for the upcoming financial year.

“Councillors have deliberately neglected their responsibilities and stayed away from discharging their duties in council.”

She said Cogta would be investigating councillors who had been absent from council on more than three occasions to ensure they had not violated the councillors’ code of conduct. “It is clear from the failure by the majority of councillors to attend meetings, that they did not take council business seriously.”

Dube-Ncube said Cogta chief director Lionel Pienaar had been appointed the administrator as part of the urgent intervention to contain the situation.

She said Pienaar would introduce a recovery plan and work with councillors to ensure the budget is passed.

“The reality is that the municipal council has reached the edge and may become permanently dysfunctional if the situation is not contained as soon as possible,” said Dube-Ncube.

She said the decision was in the best interest of the local community and urged councillors to cooperate “or risk even higher sanctions being imposed”.

DA provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango said while it was a good ­decision to place Ingwe under ­administration, the problem stemmed from the municipality being unable to resolve internal politics. Mncwango said there was a lack of leadership in the municipality that arose from an alleged lack of leadership in the ANC. “If the internal politics had been properly dealt with, this problem would have never existed,” he said.

IFP national chairperson Blessed Gwala said the decision was “the right thing to do” but added that the party had been complaining about Ingwe Municipality for two years. “For two years we tried to draw attention to the issues in Ingwe Municipality. Nobody would listen and now that it is almost elections, something is being done.”


Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  cogta

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