Municipal manager hits back at detractors

PHOTO: suppliedNkosazana Dlamini-Zuma municipal manager Nkosiyezwe Vezi.
PHOTO: suppliedNkosazana Dlamini-Zuma municipal manager Nkosiyezwe Vezi.

NKOSAZANA Dlamini-Zuma Municipality (NDZ) manager Nkosiyezwe Vezi has come out guns blazing against those who are said to be calling for a new person to be appointed in this post.

This after reports that it was unclear whether Council would renew his contract after it ended on January 31. He is now on a three-month extension.

“I believe the criticism directed at me and the mayor Ngeneleni Mncwabe is from bitter people who are jealous of the achievements we have made as a team. It is all malicious and vindictive,” said Vezi. He confirmed that he is still municipal manager.

“Those who joined local government with criminal intentions will stop at nothing in their attempts to get rid of me so that they can have unlimited access to public funds, dish out tenders and jobs to friends and family members,” said Vezi. “I am being persecuted for being an honest public servant who refuses to let anyone steal from the public or abuse state resources under my control.”

He was appointed as municipal manager of Ingwe Local Municipality in 2012 and consequently Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma Municipality after the 2016 Local Government Elections after Ingwe merged with KwaSani Local Municipality. He said is proud of what has been achieved by these two municipalities under his stewardship as they are the pride of the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) as being the most successful merger in Kwa-
Zulu-Natal.

“Today the Department of Energy has ranked us number one in KZN on rural electrification since we have achieved universal access to electricity and we are currently doing in-fills, which is the electrification of newly built households in the villages. This is a massive feat considering that other municipalities in the district still have people who live in the darkness, use firewood for energy and whose children still do homework under candle light.”

He said in the five years that he has been manager for both Ingwe and NDZ, they have achieved successive unqualified audit outcomes from the auditor-general.

“I applied for the job of MM of NDZ and I went to an interview which I have it in good authority that I performed better than anyone at the interview. I have more than the required qualifications and experience which I have worked hard for at different universities in the country. I will wait for Council to inform me in writing, as required by law, why they are not prepared to appoint the number-one candidate. I will then take it from there to protect my rights in law.”

He said in NDZ he has built financial reserves that are the envy of other municipalities. “I have built a sound administration in less than a year after the merger. The economy of NDZ keeps growing every day and our capital budget is sitting at R79 million, which is only second to the district. It is a sense of pride in me that when other municipalities are bankrupt and their budgets are not cash backed, NDZ is financially sound with reserves of over R130 million growing in just over a year of birth,” said Vezi.

After the three-month extension expires it will be up to Council to decides whether to re-appoint him for the full term of appoint a new manager.

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