5-year contract ends after 2 months

SACKED: Differ Mogale. © Unknown.
SACKED: Differ Mogale. © Unknown.

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

It's official - the controversial 2010 project coordinator for the municipality of Mbombela in Mpumalanga has been sacked and the town's mayor and municipal manager are to face charges in connection with his appointment.

Differ Mogale, 38, was fired at a council meeting on Monday night after a two-week investigation by a municipal committee.

And now the council has resolved that disciplinary procedures be instituted against municipal manager Jacob Dladla.

Together with mayor Justice Ntsibande, Dladla will have to pay the municipality all the money spent in appointing Mogale.

The committee has resolved that Mogale's contract and appointment letter be repudiated.

It was also resolved that a new 2010 coordinator be appointed and that interviews with applicants for the position be held not later than March 15.

Mogale was appointed Mbombela's 2010 coordinator in November but was fired after only two months of his five-year-contract because his appointment was declared to have been unprocedural.

He took the municipality to the Johannesburg labour court, alleging unfair dismissal, and won. The court said the municipality's decision to nullify Mogale's position as coordinator did not constitute termination of employment.

Mogale was reinstated for the duration of an investigation that was completed this week.

Bessie Pienaar, Mbombela's spokesman, said after the investigation that the council had found that the contract between the municipality, Mogale and municipal manager Jacob Dladla, was invalid.

Pienaar said: "It has been resolved that the process to appoint a new 2010 coordinator be restarted and that a report be submitted to the council on March 26."

The council has also resolved that a forensic investigation be made into the payment of R43million to Lefika, the company managing the building of the Mbombela stadium.

"Disciplinary action should be instituted against the municipal manager and he must not interfere in the process," read the council's resolution.

The investigation found that Dladla deliberately disregarded a council resolution and signed Mogale's employment contract. The appointment was referred back to him by the council for clarification.

A committee of the council also resolved that costs regarding the appointment of Mogale, and his visit to Dubai, be regarded as unauthorised and irregular expenditure, and that the money be recovered from the executive mayor, Ntsibande, and from Dladla.

The executive mayor will be charged with misleading the council in a report on Mogale submitted by him last year.

It was noted that Ntsibande did not always consult the mayoral committee with regard to key issues.

The findings of the investigation were that both the mayor and the municipal manager were arrogant and disrespectful during their appearance before the council's committee.

Mogale said he had not been informed of his dismissal.