Municipal anti-corruption gains momentum

Speaking after the walk, Greater Kokstad Municipality Mayor Bheki Mtolo said that they developed and launched the hotline to show that there will be zero tolerance against fraud and corruption.

“I am asking our communities to use this platform to report any kind of fraud and corruption and people must use it wisely,” said the mayor. He cautioned communities that abusing the hotline number would lead to severe consequences. The mayor said that they launched the hotline number after some municipal cashier allegedly defrauded the municipality of R7.4 million between 2011 and 2012.

“We are serious in fighting fraud and corruption because it steals from the poor,” said Mtolo. Meanwhile, Griqua Traditional Council Chairperson Gabriel Marais who was part of the campaign, said that they welcome the initiative done by the municipality to fight the scourge against fraud and corruption.

“As Griquas, we believe that the hotline numbers will help in the escalation of the fight against fraud and corruption because it has been regulated by an independent watchdog not by the municipality,” said Marais. Marais said that corruption creates and increases poverty and exclusion while corrupt officials and politicians enjoy a lavish life.

The mayor encouraged communities to report unlawful or irregular behaviour including procurement irregularities, staff, senior, junior misconducts, nepotism and harassment. Many resident attended the demonstration believed that the hotline will promote transparency, accountability and integrity with the municipality.

Denial Malaka, a Kokstad resident said corruption deprives them from basic needs such as food, health, education, housing, access to clean water and sanitation.

“We feel powerless against corrupt officials because the institutions which exist to safeguard citizen’s rights are seen as the most corrupt,” said Malaka.

Malaka said that fraud and corruption is the single biggest threat to poor people and that the solution lies with good, ethical leadership, and strong enforcement of laws to fight against it.

The 24-hour fraud and corruption hotline: 010 593 0835, fax number for reporting: 086 464 6272 or e-mail:
kokstad@thecorruptionholine.com

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