CITY GIVES IN TO DEMANDS
Johannesburg City Council last night bowed to pressure and suspended two officials who the SA Municipal Workers Union has accused of corruption.
Members of Samwu went on strike on Monday to force the council to act on the allegations that deputy director Abel Nkosi had covered up for internal investigator Elmarie de Beer, who the union claims had bought an impounded vehicle for R600.
Roodepoort testing station manager Koti Essau was also suspended yesterday. The union alleges she altered the test results of an applicant for a driver's licence.
No action has been taken against JMPD chief Chris Ngcobo.
Council spokesman Gabu Tugwana said yesterday: "Management had a meeting and a letter addressing the workers' complaints was sent to the union. As far as we are concerned, the strike is over. In the court papers, there is no single reference made to Ngcobo. We will deal with the matter at a later date. Now we want the union to bring evidence they have against the suspended officials."
He said the letter to the union pointed out that the city had employed an external investigator to determine whether action should be taken against the two officials.
The city has also undertaken to stop employing pensioners and not to renew the contracts of those in its employ.
The union had threatened to go on a full-scale strike next Thursday if their concerns were not addressed.
"The City of Johannesburg has no leadership. We are not asking them to dismiss Ngcobo. We are asking them to redeploy him because he cannot run the department. The ANC deployed him to the department, so they must redeploy him," said Samwu's Dumisani Langa yesterday.
Langa said the union would meet the ANC today to discuss the strike. If no agreement was reached, all municipal workers - including Pikitup, emergency services and Metrobus drivers - would join the strike.
Cosatu has pledged support for Samwu. In a statement yesterday, the federation said: "They are striking against the failure of the JMPD senior management to investigate allegations of corruption against senior officers, and their refusal to implement all the agreements reached on wage increases."
JMPD spokesman Wayne Minnaar said 400 officers were on duty attending to accident and crime scenes.