UDM calls on Masualle to fire top official in Mandela funeral scandal
The United Democratic Movement (UDM) in Eastern Cape has called on premier Phumulo Masualle to allow the axe to fall on the provincial government director-general (DG)‚ Marion Mbina-Mthembu‚ after her implication in the misuse of state funds for Nelson Mandela’s funeral‚ which was revealed in the public protector’s report.
Mbina-Mthembu was fingered by Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane for having “misdirected” the provincial government in 2013 into channelling about R300-million of taxpayers’ money to the Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC).
The money transferred from government coffers was meant for social infrastructure in the province‚ but on Mbina-Mthembu’s advice‚ the provincial government transferred it to the ECDC to be used on preparations for Mandela's funeral.
UDM leader in the province Thando Mpulu said there was only one option for Masualle‚ following the damning findings against Mbina-Mthembu – that being to show her the door.
“Only through the premier’s firm action by releasing [Mbina-Mthembu]‚ will we know whether or not the premier himself was complicit – because if he does not act‚ it would send a message that he was complicit‚” said Mpulu.
At the time of Mandela’s funeral‚ Masualle was an MEC at provincial treasury‚ with Mbina-Mthembu as his head of the department.
“The premier cannot wait for the SIU [Special Investigations Unit] proclamation‚ because the DG has long been underperforming in her role – therefore this just adds to our long-held view‚ that she is not fit for the job.”
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