Maile's actions 'not guided by legal prescripts', says City of Tshwane speaker

2020-01-29 22:54
Lebogang Maile. (Tebogo Letsie, Gallo Images, file)

Lebogang Maile. (Tebogo Letsie, Gallo Images, file)

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City of Tshwane speaker Katlego Mathebe says Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Lebogang Maile has "once again acted in a manner that is not guided by any of the applicable legal prescripts".

This follows a directive issued by Maile to the City's chief whip to conduct an investigation into Mathebe and her counterpart in the City of Johannesburg, Vasco da Gama.

In a statement on Wednesday, Mathebe said she welcomed the investigation "as long as the correct processes are followed according to applicable legal prescripts and within the ambit of the law".

The directive, she added, flouted the processes outlined by the Rules and Orders By-Laws that govern council business as well as the rules and ethics committee.

"Procedurally, if anyone wants to report an alleged breach of the code, he or she must approach the Office of the Speaker in terms of the provisions of item 13 of the code.

"In view of the fact that the speaker is implicated, then the reporting must be directed to the acting speaker as appointed by [the] council on January 26, 2017.

"The acting speaker will then instruct the rules and ethics committee to investigate the matter, in accordance with the procedure approved by the council on September 27, 2007. Only then will the rules and ethics committee present its findings to [the] council, together with its recommendations," Mathebe said.

"The council must be afforded the opportunity, through the Office of the Speaker, to conduct an investigation, and only once it has failed to do so can the MEC intervene.

"In this instance, there is no evidence at all that the council has failed to act in accordance with the provisions of Item 14[1] and [2] of the [Code of Conduct for Councillors]."

The chief whip, she said, had no authority in this matter.

"The chief whip of [the] council has no authority at all to act in accordance with any of the prescripts mentioned above."

Last week, Maile announced the suspension of Mathebe and Da Gama for acting in a way "that breached the code of conduct", News24 reported.

A day later, the DA requested him to retract the suspension, threatening court action if he failed to do so.

"The request was not met, and only after being served with court papers did the MEC rescind his unlawful decision to suspend the councillors," Mathebe said.

Maile said the decision to suspend the two "was not taken lightly and in a partisan manner, but rather in the spirit of co-operative governance".

"The merit and correctness of our decision remains, as our actions have been consistent with the Constitution and pertinent municipal legislation."

Mathebe, however, maintained the allegations against them were not true.

"It should be stated unambiguously that the speaker executed her official duties in conformity with the provisions of items 2[a] and [b] of the code, in good faith, honestly and in a transparent manner and at all times acted in the best interest of the municipality and in such a way that the credibility and integrity of the municipality were not compromised," she said.

Read more on:    city of tshwane  |  katlego mathebe  |  lebogang maile  |  tshwane  |  johannesburg  |  politics
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