Local ANC councillor to lead protest march

2018-02-09 14:04

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ANC councillor Mtuza Mkhize is putting his neck on the line by organising a march against poor service delivery, corruption and lack of accountability in Msunduzi Municipality.

Mkhize, who is the councillor for ward 21, in Dambuza, said the ratepayers are tired of getting bad service and Pietermaritzburg was being allowed to fall into a state of decay under the ANC’s watch.

He and other concerned leaders have organised a march against poor service delivery and corruption to the City Hall on February 19.

He said the march is part of a three-month campaign to force the ANC’s national executive to act against those who have failed the people of Msunduzi. Mkhize is also a member of the ANC regional executive. “This is the capital city of the province but it’s being allowed to fall apart. During the December conference the ANC and its alliance took a stand to fight against corruption.

“That means as disciplined ANC members we have to make unpopular decisions and hold our comrades accountable for their actions,” he said.

Mkhize said the recent disclaimer opinion from the auditor-general’s office came as no surprise because Msunduzi is obviously not prioritising the needs of the residents.

He said what irked most people were the mounting allegations of corruption but no one is being arrested, instead the accused are promoted.

“We obviously need a change in the regional executive of the ANC because the current leadership is not playing its role of providing political oversight.

“If they were doing what they are supposed to do we would not have a municipality on the verge of collapse,” he said.

Mkhize, who is serving his fourth term as a councillor, said he is also concerned over the decision to move supporting units such as human resources, integrated rapid public transport network and waste management to the office of the municipal manager, Sizwe Hadebe.

‘Msunduzi had it coming’

Mkhize alleged that Hadebe does not have the capacity to manage these units.

“The municipality’s key business units are also understaffed but the posts are funded. Then there is an issue of people, including managers, who are sitting at home because their suspensions have not been finalised for more than a year,” he said.

Mkhize said he was aware that the ANC leadership would not be happy with his decision to organise the march, but they had it coming.

He said leaders have to listen to the cries of those who put them in power, or vacate their positions.

“I have repeatedly raised my concerns at ANC caucus meetings but the other councillors were either too scared to speak up or they simply didn’t care that the municipality had gone from bad to worse in a span of just one year,” he said.

He said ratepayers were fed up with paying for services that they did not get and he was willing to put his neck on the line to help them fight for what is due to them.

“This is not a march for people from a particular ward or political organisation. It’s for everyone who is tired of seeing our City fall apart.

“It’s for everyone who is tired of reporting leaking pipes that are not being fixed. It’s for everyone who is tired of complaining about street lights not working or who has not had water for months. It’s time we stand together and say enough is enough, we deserve better than this,” said Mkhize.

Attempts to get comment from the ANC’s regional executive spokesperson Sphamandla Khumalo and secretary Mzi Zuma were unsuccessful.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  msunduzi municipality

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