thanks for the big bucks

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

The suspension of the director of communications in the Greater Tzaneen municipality (GTM) in Limpopo, Solly Mokhashoa, has taken a dramatic twist.

The investigating team into Mokhashoa's case, led by former acting municipal manager of Greater Phalaborwa municipality and now a practising advocate, Anderson Mudunungu, has demanded that Mokhashoa provide them with his qualifications.

Mokhashoa, a former taxi queue marshal at Modjadjiskloof, allegedly did not hold any qualifications in the communications field at the time of his appointment, but commands a R45000 a month salary.

Head of the human resources department at GTM, Tinus Visser, said yesterday that Mokhashoa was earning R480000 a year when he was appointed in September 2005.

By July last year his salary had been increased to R504114 excluding a yearly bonus of 10 percent. He was appointed on a five-year contract which ends on August 31 2010.

Visser said his position required a three-year tertiary qualification in the communications or related field plus experience in the communications department.

But Mokhashoa's curriculum vitae shows that he passed matric in 1987 with five subjects but had no qualifications in the communications field.

His qualifications and experience fell short of those stipulated in the advertisement for his position but he was still appointed to the lucrative job, pipping qualified candidates.

Sources within the municipality said yesterday the request for his qualifications was a ploy to kick Mokhashoa out of the post.

He was suspended together with community services director, Vincent Maake, last month on full pay for allegedly trying to influence Tzaneen residents to oppose a recovery plan and for refusing to take orders from their superiors.

The legal team has requested the municipality to submit Mokhashoa's and Maake's qualifications to verify whether or not they were fit for their jobs. Mabakane Mangena, the municipality's manager, confirmed yesterday that the investigating team had requested Mokhashoa's qualifications.