The African National Congress is starting its “dispute resolution process” in a bid to address the a.
The Pretoria high court has ordered the Modimolle municipality in Limpopo to stop the payment of two cheques of R250000 each to two suspended senior municipal officials.
The officials allegedly signed over the cheques to themselves.
The court has also suspended the recent council decision to reinstate Charles Powell as municipal manager.
Powell and the municipality's former chief financial officer, Matshidiso Segwapa, were dismissed in June last year after being found guilty of financial mismanagement.
But after alleged political pressure the council reinstated them in November.
Following the decision, the two allegedly issued cheques to themselves without getting approval from the council.
The two officials allegedly claimed it was compensation for the time they spent sitting at home.
A councillor in the municipality, Willem Fourie, testified in court - through his lawyer - that he was told of the cheques.
Fourie said he phoned First National Bank to try to cancel the cheques - but an official told him that if the bank system had accepted the signatures of the two officials "his hands were tied".
The bank official said he was obliged by law to process the cheques - unless a court order was granted prohibiting him from doing so.
Judge Roger Classen was told that the cheques were issued by the officials themselves in spite of a court order that they were not entitled to any compensation.
Fourie won an order on December 31 against the payment of the money.
According to a copy of an order from court, which cited the municipality mayor Kgaretja Lekalakala, speaker Joas Mashao and other councillors as respondents, the municipality was to stop the payment of the money immediately after the order was issued.
The municipality, Lekalakala and Mashao were also ordered to pay the costs of the application "jointly and severally on an attorney and client scale".
"Such costs should include the costs consequently (incurred) upon the employment of two counsels," the court order read.
The matter is set to return to court on May 4 when the council must give reasons why the order should not be made final.