COPE in KwaZulu-Natal has called on President Jacob Zuma and premier Zweli Mkhize to "take a firm stand against fraud and corruption".

Cope spokesperson Siyanda Mhlongo said the time for paying lip service to fighting corruption was over.

"It is time for action," he said. "Zuma, his cabinet, Mkhize and the ANC have issued many warnings but it is time they acted against corruption, cronyism, lazy councillors and crime."

He said corruption was rife in provincial municipalities such as eThekwini, iLembe, uMgungundlovu and Mduduzi.

"Some of the corruption has been reported to Corporate Government and Traditional Affairs Minister Sicelo Shiceka in writing - but nothing has been done."

Mhlongo said the Ithala bank in KwaZulu-Natal was "stinking with corruption and cronyism".

"The bank, which is supposed to assist emerging entrepreneurs, has become a milking cow for politicians, including those who say the current ANC administration is ready to fight corruption, inefficiency and nepotism," Mhlongo said.

In response Mkhize said the provincial executive has committed itself to represent the public fairly.

"Political parties must work with communities to fight any form of crime and eradicate fraud and corruption in our society," the premier said. "We have to accelerate the delivery of services to all our people ."

Mkhize said they had encouraged communities to form forums in order to fight crime.

"These forums will ensure that there is an ongoing interaction with law enforcement agencies and will provide a platform to report, investigate and monitor any fraud or criminal activities."