New Tshwane mayor to reveal city manager's fate

2019-02-22 07:44
Stevens Mokgalapa. (Tshidi Madia, News24)

Stevens Mokgalapa. (Tshidi Madia, News24)

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Newly elected Tshwane Mayor Stevens Mokgalapa is expected to reveal the fate of city manager Moeketsi Mosola on Friday.

Mokgalapa announced his mayoral committee on Thursday, as well as his plans to accelerate services delivery in the capital city. However, he told media that they would have to wait 24 hours before he would pronounce on Mosola's future.

Mokgalapa said that he had already met with Mosola four times since taking up the role as mayor last week and that the relationship had been "very cordial".

Suspension bids against Mosola fail

This in contrast to his predecessor Solly Msimanga, who unsuccessfully tried to have Mosola suspended in council on three different occasions.

In January, Mosola survived the latest vote aimed at having him suspended.

At a late night council seating, behind closed doors, 94 councillors voted in favour of a suspension and 111 voted against.

The motion to suspend, brought by the DA, was not based on the controversial multimillion GladAfrica contract, but rather on alleged misconduct.

EXCLUSIVE: GladAfrica scandal - Mosola quietly concedes tender was irregular, says official

Both Msimanga and Mosola are caught in the middle of a corruption scandal, involving allegations of tender irregularity that led to the awarding of a multibillion-rand contract to provide project management support to the City.

In September, Msimanga took the allegations of wrongdoing to the council.

An independent investigation was authorised, but the council did not suspend Mosola.

Mosola initially denied the allegations of wrongdoing and said all processes had been followed in the awarding of the tender, but was later proven wrong by the Auditor-General's 2017/18 report, which declared that the tender was in fact irregularly awarded to GladAfrica by the City of Tshwane in November 2017.

The audit report showed that the City didn't comply with supply chain management regulations.

EFF and DA agreement on Mosola

In a statement by the ANC in Tshwane last week, they alleged that the DA-led administration had been put under pressure to keep Mosola, in a deal struck between the DA and the EFF.

The ANC alleged that the retention of Mosola was to appease the EFF as part of the coalition deal.

"While the DA has managed to whisk away Solly "Posterboy of corruption" Msimanga from taking responsibility for the rot he created in the City, it appears Mosola will continue wreaking havoc at the helm of the City's administration due to the political protection he enjoys from the DA and the EFF; without being held accountable," the statement read.

Mokgalapa dismissed these allegations, calling them rumours and gossip, adding that he thrived on facts and the truth.

"All will be revealed tomorrow," Mokgalapa told media.

New MMC team

Mokgalapa's new mayoral committee remained largely the same as Msimanga's team, with several MMCs returning.

There were also four new members included in the City's top management.

The new appointments are: Abel Tau, who will head up Utility Services; Karen Meyer will be in charge of Community Safety; Richard Moheta will steer the Agricultural and Environmental Management ship; and Isak Pieterson becomes the new MMC for Economic Development and Spatial Planning.

READ: Tshwane gets a new mayor

Derick Kissoonduth from the ACDP, who was previously the MMC for Community Safety, has now been deployed to oversee the health services department, while FF+ Plus member Sakkie Du Plooy moves from health to the Department of Community and Social Development.

Mare-Lise Fourie retains her position as MMC of Finance, Mandla Nkomo returns to the housing department, with Sheila Lynn Senkubuge remaining Roads and Transport MMC, and Cilliers Brink retaining his Corporate and Shared Services position.

Accelerated service delivery

The new mayor also announced plans to enhance service delivery in the city.

"I want to be clear that I intend to be a mayor that focuses on service delivery. The provision of water, electricity, transport and urban management services are the core business of this administration," Mokgalapa said.

He said that part of the work of the MMCs would be to provide political leadership and oversight to the service delivery in each of the seven regions in Tshwane.

He added that Moheta would be the MMC who would oversee the functioning of the Regional Operations Centre (ROC)

"While we have made strides in service delivery, I fully appreciate the multitude of challenges that lie before us and am confident that we will find solutions to the problems affecting our people."

As Mokgalapa announced his new team, there were two protests outside Tshwane House.

Olievenhoutbosch residents expressed their dissatisfaction about service delivery and City employees protested about an unsafe building they work in.

Read more on:    da  |  solly msimanga  |  stevens mokgalapa  |  pretoria  |  service delivery  |  corruption  |  politics  |  local government
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