De Lille lays into Bowmans reports as she mulls her future as mayor

2018-10-24 15:30
Executive Mayor Patricia de Lille

Executive Mayor Patricia de Lille (Adrian de Kock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille questioned the credibility of a law firm that conducted an inquiry into alleged corruption and maladministration in the City of Cape Town ahead of a crucial City council meeting on Thursday.

On Wednesday, amid speculation that she might not resign as mayor as previously agreed with the DA, De Lille released a statement expressing her "great disappointment and dismay" that she again has "to deal with the repercussions of council information, which was leaked maliciously by faceless, nameless and useless people, to injure my good name".

At the centre of the turmoil are two "contradictory" reports by law firm Bowmans, previously known as Bowman Gillfillan. In one report into corruption and maladministration in the City of Cape Town, De Lille is reportedly found to be complicit in irregularities. The second report, however, absolves De Lille.

"I have repeatedly taken issue with the credibility of Bowmans, ever since the inception of this investigation," De Lille said.

"The initial report issued by Bowmans, on December 29, 2017 made a number of 'factual findings' which were inaccurate or simply baseless. I wrote to them on January 3, 2018 requesting them to retract a number 'recommendations' made by themselves on issues which they had not even questioned me on."

She said her request for them to delete the "misinformation" was rejected.

"On January 5, 2018, when council adopted the unedited report, even though I went on the record to say that there were a number of material factual errors upon which Bowmans made 'highly prejudicial findings', 'conclusions', and 'recommendations' (sic)."

De Lille claimed one such false "factual finding" was that she provided the DA leader Mmusi Maimane, a copy of forensic reports. According to De Lille, Maimane later confirmed in writing that she had not given him any documents.

"I was defamed. I was embarrassed by the false accusations, but I still welcomed the investigation, and actively participated when my turn came," De Lille said.

"I was therefore shocked when almost six months later, on June 1, 2018 at around 06:00 on Radio 786, Alderman JP Smith was recorded saying the following about my alleged conduct: 'The Bowman Gillfillan report has multiple findings, prima facie findings, that says she misled council. To the point that full council voted to take the investigation against her further. And those findings will be out in due course, and I can't wait for them to be out.'"

De Lille wrote to Bowmans on the same day, stating that she understood that the investigation was ongoing.

"I was therefore perturbed about what Alderman JP Smith was basing his excitement on, because he clearly had access to information I was not privy to," she claimed.

She said at that stage the report could not even have included her version of the alleged events because she had not yet provided her written responses. 

"Once again, Bowmans vehemently denied that they had shared any information, despite evidence to the contrary."

She said she again wrote to Bowmans – after her deputy Ian Neilson was quoted saying they were due to report in August but seemed to have been delayed.

"Bowmans once again denied the confidentiality breach despite evidence to the contrary.

"So I am not surprised that there has once again been a very strategic leak of information whilst I was away on official business for three days," De Lille said.

"This is consistent with the smear campaign that I have been the subject of since the inception of this investigation last year."

She said it was very convenient for her adversaries to accept recommendations "because it suits their agenda to malign me". 

"It is in this context that I wish to reserve my rights in terms of the 'findings', 'conclusions' and 'recommendations' in both reports. I will subject myself to all the necessary processes to have my name cleared.

"I cannot understand how the same company conducting the same investigation, on the same charge can come to two different conclusions."

She said her lawyers wrote to Bowmans to seek clarity on this and requested a response by the end of business on Wednesday. 

"Once I receive their response, discuss it with my lawyers and pending the decision of council tomorrow [Thursday] regarding which of the two reports they will adopt, I will then be in the position to announce what my next steps will be.

"Extreme caution should therefore be exercised in slavishly relying on the findings, conclusions and recommendations contained in the reports, particularly considering that the reports appear to be in conflict with each other."

*This article has been updated.

Read more on:    da  |  bowmans gilfillan  |  city of cape town  |  patricia de lille  |  cape town  |  local government

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Cluster Financial Manager

Cape Town
Network Finance
R950 000.00 - R1 000 000.00 Per Year

IT Manager (contract)

Cape Town CBD
Communicate Cape Town IT
R330 000.00 - R458 000.00 Per Year

Reporting Accountant

Cape Town
Network Finance Professional / Prudential
R310 000.00 - R360 000.00 Per Year

Property [change area]

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.