eThekwini Municipality denies political push to remove Metro Police boss

The eThekwini Municipality has denied any political motives in a push to negotiate early retirement for embattled Metro Police head Eugene Nzama.

 Nzama‚ who was first appointed in 2002‚ has been at odds with city management and even took his bosses to court earlier this year for usurping his powers.

 A daily newspaper reported that Nzama’s legal team was locked in talks with eThekwini Municipality administrators and could walk away with a R10-million package‚ given that he still has six years left until he is due to retire.

Nzama had purportedly fallen out of favour with the new political administration of the city and had been seen as a close ally of former mayor James Nxumalo.

 eThekwini Municipality spokesperson Tozi Mthethwa said that while they would not discuss employee issues in the public domain‚ any negotiations to draw Nzama into early retirement were not politically motivated.

 “There is no political agenda. We do not use politics when dealing with administrative matters‚” she said. “eThekwini Municipality does not discuss employee issues with a third party… In addition‚ the municipality has a code of conduct for officials and a disciplinary code.”

Mthethwa moved to allay fears that the ructions within the Metro Police would affect service delivery.

 “The Municipality has an approved service delivery plan which consists of plans that are delivered by various units. The implementation of the service delivery plan is in full swing at the present moment.”

In his court application in May‚ Nzama told of how he had been “rendered ineffectual” by former city manager S’bu Sithole and his acting replacement‚ Dumisile Nene.

Nzama has been at the helm of the City police since 2002‚ having staved off several attempts to have him run out of office. He has been embroiled in public disputes with the South African Municipal Workers Union over allegations that include maladministration‚ corruption‚ nepotism‚ favouritism and harassment of taxi drivers.

During his tenure the Metro Police effectively revolted‚ embarking on a public strike.


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