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Samwu takes Herman Mashaba to task - 'his statement is tainted with glaring factual distortions'

The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) today accused Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba‚ who vowed to arrest corrupt officials in the city’s licensing department‚ of making serious allegations about licensing staff.

Mashaba revealed on Tuesday that his municipal administration had uncovered 927 transactions worth just under R15 million that may have been fraudulent.

Mashaba said four officials at the licensing department had already been arrested for fraud and corruption after an investigation into fraud involving R14.7 million and that a further 106 allegedly corrupt officials would be arrested in the next few days.

Samwu Gauteng spokesman Jack Mokalapa said: “It is unacceptable for any person in council leadership to use such for political mileage‚ as these allegations are of a serious and sensitive nature‚ especially if they are proven untrue.”

“We equally condemn the unwarranted media spectacle created by the mayor in pursuit of appropriating ill-deserved credit on an investigation his administration knows nothing about.”

“Without any fear of contradiction‚ we want to state that as much as we agree with the mayor that corruption is public enemy number one‚ his statement … is tainted with glaring factual distortions.”

Mashaba responded with tweets to the concerns raised by the union.

“I am deeply concerned with the embarrassing and contradictory press conference held by Samwu today‚” said Mashaba

He added: “If Samwu was serious about their fight against corruption they’d back the new administration & our zero-tolerance approach to corruption.”

“I invite Samwu to challenge us in terms of us dealing with cases that they may find uncomfortable or unclear. Our doors are open.” said Mashaba.