Investigator to meet with municipality about charges

IN November 2016 Ugu District Municipality stopped a Sanlam Group Life policy, which the municipality had taken out for its employees.

This was after the municipality discovered employees had been overcharged on their subscriptions.

This led to the employees going on strike demanding that their contributions be repaid.

Meetings were held and at one Sanlam representatives were called to address employees.

It is alleged the representatives promised the staff that contributions would be paid within the next 10 days from the day of the meeting, 24 November, 2016.

After 10 days, no payment was received so the staff decided to strike until the money was paid.

Municipal management met with the employee’s union - Samwu - and agreed to repay five months’ contributions to the staff.

Ugu said money would be sourced by them as Sanlam refused to reimburse the money.

Weeks later, reports and statements from Sanlam said they are aware of the strike, but do not administer any pension fund on behalf of the district municipality or its employees and is thus are not involved in any matters concerning issues relating to pension fund contributions.

Earlier this month there were reports of charges being laid against Ugu by Sanlam representatives, who were at the meeting on 24 November, 2016.

The representatives filed charges, claiming they were held in the meeting against their will and were intimidated by certain individuals of Ugu.

Police confirmed a docket has been opened and investigations are continuing.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Zandra Wiid said when the investigation is complete, the case docket will be submitted to the senior state prosecutor.

A Sanlam spokesperson also confirmed a case was opened and they are awaiting a response about the investigations from Port Shepstone SAPS.

The spokesperson said a statement was sent out on 9 December, 2016 clarifying that Sanlam does not administer any pension fund on behalf of the district municipality or its employees and is thus not engaged in any matters that may surround issues relating to pension fund contributions.

Ugu spokesperson France Zama said the investigating officer has contacted the municipality.

“An investigation officer has made a call to the municipality seeking to secure an appointment to meet with the municipality to obtain further information in this regard.

“At this stage, there are no further details available while the investigation is under way,” said Zama.

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