premier gets tough
MPUMALANGA Premier David Mabuza has warned that Mkhondo municipal officials cited in affidavits for irregularly selling stands and houses will be suspended immediately.
Mabuza was speaking to thousands of residents who had gathered at Mandla Magudulela Stadium in the trouble-torn Thandu-kukhanya township near Piet Retief yesterday.
He was giving feedback, as promised, to residents after the government's investigations against allegations of corruption into executive mayor Maria Khumalo and several councillors.
Residents had staged service delivery protests in Mashishing near Lydenburg, where angry protesters had burnt vehicles and buildings and blocked roads.
Mabuza told the crowd that investigators had indeed found that certain individuals were implicated in corruption.
The alleged corruption concerned nepotism, abuse of municipal vehicles, mismanagement of funds and a general lack of effectiveservice delivery.
"It has been found that money for projects was used irregularly.
"We have found that certain payments were made irregularly and certain municipal workers received irregular payments," Mabuza said.
The premier said to loud applause that disciplinary hearings would be held against those implicated.
He said investigators were carefully investigating municipal credit card fraud.
Residents had also accused municipal traffic cops of selling driver's licences.
Mabuza told them that he would incorporate the traffic section into the provincial department of roads and transport under the leadership of MEC Clifford Mkansi.
Mabuza also explained that he had appointed Misaveni Khosa as administrator after the string of protests in the area.
"People have submitted affidavits to Khosa naming officials who have sold stands, houses and licences to them," Mabuza said.
While many applauded Mabuza a small group of dissenters tried to disrupt the event.