Corruption accused mayor Mzwandile Masina: I'm not going to resign

Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mzwandile Masina.
Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mzwandile Masina.

Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mzwandile Masina on Wednesday presented a brave face, saying he would finish his term amid allegations of corruption in the metro.

Masina, briefing the media at the Germiston Civic Centre, said he was being presented as the face of corruption when there was no evidence to back up the allegations.

Reading out a long statement, Masina addressed questions around the controversial, multi-million-rand chemical toilets tender, tackled allegations of maladministration and allegations of the purging of officials.

According to Masina, there was no wrongdoing in the issuing of the chemical toilets tender, adding that it was, in fact, issued before his administration came into office in August 2016.

He said there was a smear campaign aimed at forcing him to resign, which he was not prepared to do.

"The local government is the coalface of service delivery, so the stakes are high, and for us (ANC), having lost Joburg and Tshwane, we are confronted with realities. We have business interests, individual interests and the institution we must run, and the combination of those things is what you will see," said Masina.

"When people write WhatsApp messages they think the mayor is going to resign, I am going nowhere. I will stay here until the end of my term and serve the people of this area without hesitation, because this is the work we are supposed to be doing.

"Whether or not there's a smear campaign against me, I am not God, it does not start with me and will not end with me. Everybody thinks that the City of Ekurhuleni is the best city at this point, so we will deal with these sideshows as they come, but we will not be shaken."

Masina said all was above board with the chemical toilets tender. 

He said Ekurhuleni was providing sanitation services through chemical toilets to 600,000 people in the metro's informal settlements. To date, he said, the city had provided 39,000 chemical toilets, an increase from 9,000 at the end of 2014..

Contrary to media reports that the cost of the chemical toilets skyrocketed to R1.9bn, Masina said R872m had been spent.

The mayor said the primary contractor given the tender in 2014, TCM Developments, had at the time indicated that it only had the capacity to supply 2,000 chemical toilets instead of the 9,000 required at the time.

This, he said, presented a necessity for the tender to be "unbundled in order to mitigate the risk of non-delivery", which led to the appointment of three other contractors which "rejected the offered rates".

This then led to the appointment of 16 other service providers between November and June this year.

Masina also addressed allegations that he misled council to suspend COO Joe Mojapelo. This, according to him, was not true, as the council resolved to suspend Mojapelo  on the basis of a Special Investigating Unit report. Mojapelo has denied the allegations against him.

"We wish to advise the COO to appear before the independent DC hearing and defend himself against all charges laid against him. If he has any evidence of corruption and maladministration, we encourage him to approach law-enforcement agencies and report corrupt individuals," said Masina.

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