BRITS POS – BRITS – The Executive Mayor of Madibeng, Cllr Douglas Maimane on Friday, 25 February 2022 addressed the media regarding the troubling questions about the total collapse of service delivery and alleged fraud and corruption and accountability of employees.
“Rebuilding Madibeng Municipality is a commitment and assignment which we as the Executive Leadership of this institution have committed to. We will do so by championing a corruption free municipality regardless of the attacks we anticipate to face. We have communicated our clear intentions within the few months in Office, which is amongst others to restore quality Service Delivery to our communities, confronting corruption and constantly interacting with our people through various means such as the Community Imbizo programmes,” says Maimane.
Maimane said that all municipal officials will be subjected to an audit which authenticates their qualifications. This is done so that all employees who misled council and submitted fraudulent or fake qualifications should be dismissed from the municipality and criminal cases be opened against them to recover all the monies which the municipality lost.
This process has already led to suspension of two officials and resignation of an employee.
Many are expected to be suspended within the next two weeks. Shocking allegations are reported about a scam wherein some officials sold employment to members of the public and demanding other means as repayment. It is alleged that some of the affected officials do not even have matric as a basic requirement for the positions they occupy.
“The municipality has conducted various investigations, including forensic investigations in response to allegations of corruption raised in the recent past. Unfortunately, the reports produced after such investigations have never been acted upon, and thus our Executive has begun a process of ensuring that all reports relating to investigations done, should be implemented immediately without fail and criminal charges be instituted against those who are implicated.
This must lead to suspensions and subsequent dismissal of those implicated in corruption. The municipality’s Budget and Treasury department is amongst those that are greatly affected by acts of corruption and we are in a process on instituting some forensic investigations to that effect,” says Maimane.
He stated that water supply challenges within the municipality continues to be a reality and we are committed to respond to these challenges without fear.
“However, we need to remind residents that a project to upgrade the water purification plant started in 2014 and to date it remains unfinished, but we have, together with Department of Water and Sanitation put measures in place to ensure the completion of the project before 2023.”
It is alleged that some officials have been colluding with service providers which has exacerbated the water challenges.
In an audit it was discovered that service providers have been charging the municipality exorbitant amounts for services of which some were not even provided.
“Some of the services claimed by service providers are supposed to have been done by our municipal officials. Disciplinary processes have commenced to respond to all wrongdoings by our officials within the water division.
“On Housing matters, the municipality has received numerous complaints with regard to the conduct of some of our officials and such allegations were ranging from illegal selling of RDP Houses, illegal leasing of municipal properties and illegal alienation of land. Disciplinary processes are already ongoing and two municipal officials are suspended in response to these challenges.
“On a disappointing note, we wish to condemn acts of hooliganism demonstrated by a group of Madibeng Black Business Chamber members who have been closing the municipal sites and harassing our workers. These are acts of lawlessness which should be condemned. We wish to assure our workers that we have beefed up security on all our sites for their safety and wellbeing.
We have confidence in law enforcement agencies that will bring to book all found in the wrong.
We are conscious of the reality that beneficiaries of corruption will never give up without a fight, but we are ready to confront all challenges.
“The municipality has lost a lot revenue due to duplicate payments which were as a result of officials colluding with some businesses.” Maimane says this practice took place over an extended period of time without being addressed. Action is being taken against all affected officials.
Maimane says they remain resolute in their efforts to rebuild the Madibeng Local Municipality as a corruption free municipality, to deliver quality services to residents in line with their constitutional mandate.
“We want to make our town, a town of choice and improve infrastructure and attract the necessary investments.”