College head in a fix

THE chief executive of the Mopani FET College in Phalaborwa, Limpopo, might find herself in hot water after she awarded a colleague a cleaning contract at the institution.

THE chief executive of the Mopani FET College in Phalaborwa, Limpopo, might find herself in hot water after she awarded a colleague a cleaning contract at the institution.

Charity Sehlake has been accused of awarding a cleaning contract without following the correct procedures to Ntsako and Basani gardening services, whose director is a lecturer at the institution.

The lecturer in question is also alleged to be Sehlake's best friend.

She was allegedly awarded a 12-month contract without the correct procurement procedure being followed.

According to a concerned member of the community, who did not want to be named, Sehlake was supposed to have advertised the job to allow other companies to tender.

It is also alleged that Sehlake has a pecuniary interest in the company that was awarded the tender.

Speaking to Sowetan yesterday, a fuming Sehlake indicated that the job was not advertised "because the value was below the amount of R500000".

Sehlake also lashed out at her colleagues and said this was a ploy to destroy her career.

"Anybody who does not understand what I am doing should come to my office and question me, and not go to the media," she said.

The contract was awarded last month after a week-long students' protest demanding that the college premises be cleaned.

The protest allegedly prompted management to appoint a cleaning company to deal with cleaning the college.

"We are not against the appointment of a service provider, but against the manner in which this one was selected," said another source, who also did not want to be identified.

"The manner in which this was done leaves much to be desired."

The appointment of the said lecturer's company, according to the FET Colleges Act, creates a conflict of interest," the source said.

Now some concerned community members want Sehlake and the lecturer who got the contract to be investigated.

They said if it were found that the correct procurement procedure was not followed, the two officials should be dismissed from work.

X