Parliament, Wednesday, 28 October 2020 – National Council of Provinces Provincial Whip for Free State, Mr Itumeleng Ntsube, has urged the Maluti-A-Phofung Local Municipality to urgently root out ghost employees in the payroll of the embattled municipality.
In its report, the municipality said it is currently re-developing a new organisational structure to correct irregular appointments made in 2017, resulting in a bloated staff complement.
Ongoing staff audits have so far discovered that out of the 1 300 employees at the municipality, there are 25 whose employment records cannot be verified, with at least four senior managers responsible for planning, budget, expenditure and supply chain management currently on suspension pending investigations into alleged corruption.
“It is unbelievable that the municipality has not dealt with these irregular appointments dating back to 2017. They should root out these ghost employees so that they can channel these resources where they are needed,” said Mr Ntsube.
The municipality is in such a financial mess that its main bank account has been attached for the past four months, raising concern about where its next equitable share, due in December, will be deposited.
The newly appointed municipal manager, Mr Futhuli Mothamaha, said the new administration is working hard to ensure the situation is corrected before December. “The Hawks are already on-site doing investigations of cases of alleged corruption and we have a proper financial recovery plan which, once approved by the Council, we will be discussing with Eskom to correct the situation that has led to the attaching of our accounts,” said Mr Mothamaha. He added that they also have a human resource revival plan to deal with the staff “with no requisite skills and professionalism”.
Maluti-A-Phofung Chief Financial Officer Ms Jemina Mazinyo said they are busy with a headcount of all municipal employees and have so far discovered that 17 of the 25 employees who cannot be verified have no contracts or appointment letters. The remaining eight were found to have bank accounts that did not correspond with municipal records.
The administrator has recently handed back the management of the municipality to the Council after it was placed under section 139 (1) (b) intervention on 10 February 2018. It has chronic electricity supply challenges due to tampering and illegal connections and owes Eskom about R3.5 billion.
The delegation continues with its hybrid Provincial Week interaction tomorrow at 10 am and will interact with the Mangaung Metro and Metsimaholo Local Municipality on governance challenges, progress made and achievements so far.
ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATION SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE NCOP CHIEF WHIP FOR FREE STATE, MR ITUMELENG NTSUBE.
For interviews with the delegation, please contact:
Cell: 081 715 9969
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