Hadebe — will ANC go ahead?

2017-09-20 14:50
There is a strong push within ANC ranks to give Sizwe Hadebe the municipal manager post.

There is a strong push within ANC ranks to give Sizwe Hadebe the municipal manager post. (Ian Carbutt)

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An anti-Sizwe Hadebe faction has emerged from within the ANC’s Msunduzi caucus.

A group of ANC councillors opposed to Hadebe being given a permanent role by the City, appear to be plotting to fight back.

ANC councillors have been locked in meetings with ANC regional leaders for two days at the city hall as the discord over Hadebe’s employment appears to be gaining momentum.

This resulted in the postponement of the sustainable development portfolio committee which had been scheduled to take place on Tuesday.

An insider said some in the ANC benches were starting to find their voices. “Some are being genuine about this issue. They are worried that if someone was to take it to court, the City will be exposed.

“For some it is all about factions. People are fancying their chances after the ANC KZN court case.”

A WhatsApp message that circulated among ANC councillors opposed to Hadebe being appointed permanently as the municipal manager, also emerged on Tuesday.

“Sizwe has finally got his qualification. As a matter of fact they should be readvertising the post. But they want to give it to him on a silver platter. He has never been at a senior local government position. He has proven himself to be a failure.

“National Treasury has been warning us about [the looming threat of] administration. He has not submitted any reports to Cogta [Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs] as one of the conditions for his appointment. Since June 9 until now he has been acting illegally and we as ANC councillors must retrospectively legalise this appointment and continue to bury the city,” reads the message.

The Witness has been reliably informed that Cogta wrote to mayor Themba Njilo confirming that Hadebe has been acting illegally since June 9, and instructed him to appoint a permanent municipal manager by October this year.

A special full council meeting has been called for today and first on the agenda is the request for council to appoint a selection panel responsible for filling the advertised post of the City manager.

There were also rumours that the appointment of a permanent municipal manager had been delayed so that Hadebe could get his qualification.

However, Msunduzi disputed this.

The Witness has learnt that Hadebe graduated in Pretoria last week, but could not confirm the qualification he obtained.

Hadebe declined to comment on Tuesday saying, “Irrespective of what I say, I know you will write what you want to write. So go ahead and write what you like”.

He subsequently hung up and did not answer when he was called later.

Attempts to get comment from Njilo from Monday were unsuccessful.

ANC regional secretary Mzi Zuma also did not answer his phone or respond to SMS queries sent to him.

DA deputy provincial leader Mergan Chetty said the recent high court judgment regarding the legitimacy of the 2015 ANC provincial conference had resulted in major distractions in Msunduzi.

“Portfolio meetings are cancelled at the 11th hour due to internal ANC factions. Today’s [Tuesday] portfolio meeting was cancelled, again, and an urgent notice for a Special Full Council Meeting to take place tomorrow [on Wednesday] has caused mayhem.

“Leaders of these factions are irresponsibly making decisions and now want ... to appoint the acting municipal manager, Sizwe Hadebe, in the vacant position. His current appointment has been shrouded in controversy, and his qualifications are questionable.

“It has been alleged that he has received his qualifying credentials only last week, for the position he is currently acting in.”

Msunduzi spokesperson Thobeka Mafumbatha said the City would release a statement in response on Wednesday.

Read more on:    msunduzi municipality  |  pietermaritzburg

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