Samwu accuses Mopani of 'tribal' recruitment
THE South African Municipal Workers' Union (Samwu) in the Mopani district municipality, Limpopo, has waged a tribal war against senior managers, accusing them of appointing managers on a "tribal ticket".
The union wants the municipality to appoint a Tsonga-speaking person to the position of municipal manager.
The municipality is currently led by Pedi-speaking managers Joshua Matlou, who is the executive mayor, and Timothy Maake, the municipal manager.
Samwu chairman Steven Mashabane yesterday said his union had embarked on a strike because of the imbalances of staff absorption in the municipality.
"More often than not Maake overlooks Tsonga- and Venda-speaking people in favour of Pedis.
"It is wrong that the municipality is now run by a Pedi-speaking municipal manager and a Pedi-speaking mayor. It is also painful that the same municipality had a chief financial officer, technical director and corporate services director who are all Pedi-speaking," Mashabane said.
He said the contracts of the three directors had since lapsed and were not renewed after the union's intervention.
Matlou said the union's claims were "unfounded, baseless and lacked substance".
He said they did not appoint people based on tribal lines, but on their qualifications and skills.
"Why mention only Pedi-speaking directors when we also have Tsonga- and Venda-speaking directors. It is a known fact that Maake is qualified and knows his work inside out. We cannot, by law, relieve Maake of his duties in an effort to please the union."
Samwu has accused Maake of practising tribalism and nepotism in the appointment of employees at the institution.
Despite facing stiff opposition from the union, the ANC in Limpopo has ignored the union's demands and renewed Maake's contract for another five years.