Durban slated over brokers

A BUSINESSMAN has rejected the eThekwini municipality's decision to sack labour brokers, saying it was a ploy to "control everything and selectively give work to cronies".

Businessman Enoch Mthembu yesterday also accused the municipality of "not telling the truth and betraying the poor".

Last Thursday, municipal head of human resources Dave Cloete said the municipality was proud that to date a total of 1192 permanent appointments had been finalised out of 2576 posts that had been identified.

Some business owners said it was unlikely that the municipality was doing away with "business brokers on merit".

Mthembu said Cloete was not telling the truth.

"It is clear that the process is selective. Staff at Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convection Centre (ICC) were provided by an agency.

"It makes no sense for the council officials to mislead people that labour brokers are being fired," said Mthembu.

Mthembu accused city manager Mike Sutcliffe of taking away the procurement role from the ICC to the municipality.

He said the process was aimed at controlling everything and "giving tenders to labour brokers owned by his cronies and that of ANC eThekwini region chairperson John Mchunu".

"The ICC have 90 percent of staff supplied by an agency - Vukukhanye - that was awarded two tenders. The council fired an agency owned by black women known as Phumelele Labour Brokers in September," said Mthembu.

But Sutcliffe poured cold water on the issue.

"It's very strange that the process is now being personalised. The ICC is an independent company and it has its own process, but it is owned by the city," he said.

Sutcliffe said the process of providing decent jobs to the people started six months ago based on the Polokwane resolutions.

"The process of doing away with agencies has nothing to do with a specific company.

"The municipality is converting all temporary staff positions to permanent employment contracts as per political instructions."