2 Tel: (045) 839-4040 Emergency: (A/H) 083-272-0955 ° Editorial: email@example.com - advertising: firstname.lastname@example.org THE REPRESENTATIVE 6 April 2018 Pay row faces legal redress Opinions divided on overpaid councillors AT THE HELM: Enoch ANDISA BONANI ENOCH Mgijima Local Municipality (EMLM) municipal manager (MM) Chris Magwangqana is set to seek a legal opinion on the alleged overpayment of some mayoral committee members. These were appointed on a full-time basis without authorisation from Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta MEC, Fikile Xasa) and were therefore allegedly overpaid. The Rep reported (“Overpaid councillors must pay back money” March 9) that Cogta spokesman Mamnkeli Ngam confirmed the amounts paid to councillors varied because they fell into different remuneration package c at e g o r i e s . “No specific time-frame has been set, but the councillors should acknowledge debt and there should be a payment arrangement entered into.” Six of the councillors must pay back the money received between September 2016 and June 2017, while another four have to refund money dating from September 2016 to March 2018. They allegedly started benefiting from salaries based on their filling the positions full-time, an arrangement which had not been approved by Xasa. Xasa had written to then EMLM mayor Lindiwe Gunuza-Nkwentsha indicating which portfolio heads should be made full-time in May last year. The letter indicated the municipality was in no position to employ extra full-time councillors due to its financial state. DA councillor Malibongwe Xhelisilo, who submitted the motion last year, said during an ordinary council meeting last Thursday, “It would be unfair for people in the communities we serve to pay rates and services while there were councillors who owe the municipality half-a-million each.” Xhelisilo said the councillors should stop receiving municipal money “illegally” with immediate effect. United Front councillor Aaron Mhlontlo said the MM needed to come up with a recovery plan which would indicate how the said councillors would pay back the money. EFF councillor Luthando Amos said the appointed full-time councillors were approved by council as a whole and if anyone had to pay back the money, it should be all the councillors. “I hate to say this, but we told you so. As the council who approved this illegal activity we all need to have certain amounts of money deducted from our salaries so that the money is paid in full.” ANC councillor Noluthando Nqabisa said Xasa continuously contradicted himself when it came to the matter because he never objected to the councillors being appointed full-time when a meeting with him was convened last year to discuss the matter. Magwangqana suggested the situation should remain as is, until he reported back to council. Based on calculations by The Rep in accordance with the councillors’ salar y packages, the six members who were later appointed on a full-time basis owe more that R200000 each, and the four owe more than R500000 each. Mgijima Local Municipality municipal manager Chris Magwangqana might have to make some tough decisions following a call by Cogta MEC Fikile Xasa that certain EMLM councillors must pay back monies they were allegedly overpaid Picture: DAILY DISPATCH EMLM pledges ‘no electricity outages’ From page 1 account as failure to do so will result in Eskom exercising its credit control measures which include the interruption of power supply.” Interruptions were now due to start from May 3 if no further payments were made “and no compelling reason to not proceed is provided”. Eskom had also extended the public submissions deadline to April 9.“It should be emphasised that the disconnection of the bulk supply to a municipality is implemented as a last resort.” He said engagements with affected municipalities were conducted through Eskom’s customer executive and that he “was confused” that the MM said the municipality had found out about the intent to cut power through media p l at fo r m s . PORK LOIN CHOPS (TRAYS ONLY) BEEF STEW MUTTON LOIN CHOPS ‘EMLM must probe’ alleged R2.7m fraud ANDISA BONANI COPE representative in the Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality, councillor Nomazotsho Kopolo, has called for a forensic investigation into irregular expenditure which has cost the cash-strapped municipality millions in the quarter ending December 2017. The expenditure was reported by municipal public accounts R39.95 KG R44.95 KG R79.95 KG SWEET CHILLY CHICKEN BOEREWORS R49.95 KG SUPER WHITE SAMP 5KG R24.95 KG TOP CLASS SPICE BOWL 400G POLANA SPAGHETTI 500G OIL D'LITE 2LT FROZEN WHOLE BABY CARROTS 1KG R13.95 EA R 9.95 EA R28.95 EA R21.95 EA E&OE-WHILE STOCKS LAST-LIMITED QUANTITIES WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO WITHDRAW SPECIALS WITHOUT NOTICE SPECIALS VALID FOR THE 6TH AND 7TH APRIL!!!! committee chairwoman (MPAC) Marina Bennett in an ordinary council meeting last Thursday. The report indicated that R2.7-million was paid to three service providers, who provided cleaning services to the municipality over a period of 21-days in August last year during a municipal strike. “Since most of the staff had downed tools during this period, there was no formal appointment, scope of work, cleaning programme or agreement made with the service providers. “The service provider was verbally appointed as there were no officials at supply chain offices. Initially it was said only one company was appointed, but according to the municipal finance records, three different companies, Desert Fox Investment, Hazel Moon Trading and Big Ark Investment were paid for doing the same job and the companies happen to be owned by b r ot h e r s . “We are dealing with another case similar to that of the Gupta family and that is not acceptable.” Bennett said acting director of community services, Mzoxolo Dingani, who appointed the service provider, had no knowledge of how the companies changed from one to three – even though he had allegedly authorised the p ay m e n t s . The report indicated that there were no systems in place for the monitoring of fuel usage. In December alone R1.1-million was spent and could not be accounted for. Bennet t recommended there should be a municipal fleet depot with fuel tanks that would supply fuel in-house to assist and control usage. “In Whittlesea, fuel is filled via tanks and there is no record of how much fuel is used. Hofmeyr and Tarkastad fill containers to cater for trucks and tractors.” Former EMLM mayor Lindiwe Gunuza- Nkwentsha was also implicated in the irregular expenditure with a cash advance of R10 000 which was allegedly approved by official Donovan van Wyk on behalf of Dingani. Bennett said the money was requested for fuel by PROTECTING YOUR ASSETS ENSURE THAT YOU HAVE A REMOTE PANIC NEXT TO YOUR BED AT NIGHT OR ASK YOUR SECURITY COMPANY TO INSTALL A STATIC PANIC NEXT TO YOUR BED FOR ANY EMERGENCIES DURING THE NIGHT. 35 Ebden Street, Komani Tel: 045 839 7228 | 044 010 0541 | Fax: 045 838 2430 Gunuza-Nkwentsha when she attended a graduation ceremony in Johannesburg from December 13 to 15 last y e a r. “Out of the requested R10 000, R7786 was used on food and the remainder was refunded to the municipality. On another occasion R4 500 was used for unproven transport hire from Reddersburg to Johannesburg as the former mayor's car broke down.” Kopolo said the Hawks should be called in to investigate . United Front councillor Aaron Mhlontlo s u g g e st e d that the municipal manager, Chris Magwangqana, follow up on the matter or a forensic investigation be conducted. EMLM mayor Sisisi Tolashe said the municipality was against all kinds of corruption and that she welcomed the MPAC report. “Everyone implicated must be given a chance to respond to the allegations made against them before we put them to trial in this council. We need to allow the report to go back to MPAC. In 21 days we will report back to council.” Responding to questions from The Rep regarding the officials, EMLM spokesman Fundile Feketshane said council had its own internal processes that deal with its resolutions and that a statement addressing the matter would be made ava i l a b l e . "These are sensitive matters we ought to observe so that they become resolved without being influenced in any way,” he said. Security firm has tight grip on crime LAST Tuesday morning Red Guard response officers attended to a panic alarm at a store where they chased a suspect who had robbed a customer, operations manager Willie Reynecke told The Rep. Unfortunately, they could not apprehend the suspect but recovered the victim’s bag which was dropped by the suspect. On Wednesday night response officers attended to a panic alarm at a house in Sandringham where they apprehended a suspect inside the premises who had attempted to open the front door. The suspect was handed over to the police. In the early hours of Thursday morning response officers attended to an alarm activation at the Queenstown Bowling Club. Their quick reaction time prevented the suspects from entering the club but they had already bent the security gate and moved one of the CCTV cameras, although they had not entered the building. On Friday a person from a lodge on Maidenhead Farm called the company’s 24 hour control room for help. Response officers were dispatched and apprehended a suspect who had allegedly attempted to poison another person. Response officers on Saturday morning attended to a panic alarm at a business in Green Street, where they apprehended a suspect who had allegedly assaulted the business owner. He was handed over the police. Early on Sunday morning response officers on patrol in Robinson Road saw a suspicious-looking person carrying a security gate. They stopped to enquire and the suspect dropped the gate and fled. Response officers on patrol in Zeiler Street noticed a suspicious-looking person carrying big black bags. He started running and dropped the bags when he saw them. The officers recovered several thousand Rands worth of goods stolen from a snack shop nearby. The shop owner, who is not a Red Guard client, was very grateful for the return of his stock. At 2.30am response officers attended to a panic activated by the security officer at Chris Hani offices in Bells Road. The officer reported that two suspects had entered the premises, grabbed a 25l container of paint and ran away. The response officers could not apprehend the suspects but did recover the paint that was dropped.
THE REPRESENTATIVE 6 April 2018 Tel: (045) 839-4040 Emergency: (A/H) 083-272-0955 ° Editorial: email@example.com - advertising: firstname.lastname@example.org 3 Emihle wants to help poor Help beauty soar in pageant SONJA RAASCH EMIHLE Magoda, 21, of Kamastone village near Komani, has great plans to bring about change in the lives of those less fortunate. Studying at the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, Magoda is a brand ambassador for the national Miss Eagle South Africa pageant. Miss Eagle is a women empowerment contest which uses the principle of “beauty with brains and purpose” to empower young women and to help them make a positive impact on their communities. “I entered this pageant because I believe there is something God has deposited in me that I need to share with the youth of South Africa. “I want to use my poor background with the Miss Eagles platform as my tools to help the needy, to encourage the discouraged and to prove that irrespective of who you are or where you come from, you can do anything.” The title of brand ambassador marks a level in the Miss Eagle pageant which helps the participants build their brands and relationships with the media. Magoda hopes to make it into the semifinals and finals, but will need the public of Komani to vote for her. SMS the keyword Emihle to 35334. One SMS costs R3 and one SMS is equal to three votes. Voting EMIHLE MAGODA is unlimited. Follow Emihle on Instagram (Emihle Magoda Mesa2018) or like her page on Facebook (Emihle Magoda Miss Eagle South Africa brand ambassador2018). GOTCHA: Members of the cluster crime combatting team and flying squad members arrested a 47-year-old man in Komani for allegedly being in possession of two bags of dagga, valued at R3500 at the weekend. The suspect, who is originally from Lusikisiki, was believed to have been on his way to Cape Town. He appeared in the Magistrate’s Court in Komani on Wednesday Picture: SAPS Top guns join police in tavern visits SAFETY and Liaison MEC Weziwe Tikana and Eastern Cape provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga joined members of the police in Komani in visiting various taverns at the Easter period. Police spokesman Captain Namhla Mdleleni said the visits formed part of “Operation Keys” and included taverns in the town, in Ezibeleni, Mlungisi and in nearby Ilinge. “A problematic tavern where several crimes originate in Komani was closed due to non-compliance as was another in Ilinge.” Mdleleni said some Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality councillors assisted the team in checking on the tampering with electricity at some taverns. “The culprits had their electricity disconnected until the accounts have been paid.” Ntshinga commended the police for their good work. “You must keep it up and continue patrolling the taverns. The community must feel the presence of the police.” - Rep reporter