Monday, January 11, 2021

Western Cape Government launches urgent court application against Kannaland council representatives for 'prejudicial and unlawful transactions'

The Western Cape Government is taking Kannaland Municipal Council representatives and senior officials to task for their attempts to push through a raft of new “political” staff appointments as well as other potentially prejudicial and unlawful transactions.

The towns of Ladysmith, Zoar, Van Wyksdorp and Calitzdorp fall under the municipality that is in the Central Karoo.

Western Cape Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC, Anton Bredell says the appointment of political staff in the offices of the Speaker and Mayor, including an office manager, a driver, a clerk, a ‘political support’ officer and ‘support staff’ is ‘’particularly reprehensible for a small municipality in a financial crisis struggling to deliver services to the community and dealing with the economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.’’

“There are ongoing efforts to push through a contract with a private entity for the provision of electricity and water services and infrastructure at a cost of hundreds of millions of rand that would bind the Municipality for more than 25 years. This when National and Provincial Treasury have advised the Municipality that they have not followed due process nor ensured that the process followed was fair, transparent, competitive and cost effective.   It appears that the project will come at a cost of R735 millon which is clearly not affordable when the municipality’s entire available operating budget for 2020/21 is R174 million,” says Bredell.

“The latest conduct of the municipality is not only unlawful, it also undermines the hard-won gains made by the Provincial Government in respect of improving the Municipality’s financial stability and sustainability since 2017. The financial recovery plan put in place for the Municipality, introduced a cost effective and cost saving staffing structure which is now being ignored. This smacks of jobs for pals and is simply unacceptable,” Bredell added.


Done By: Mitchum George

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