The Democratic Alliance is concerned that ANC members of Victoria West’s Ubuntu municipal council are going try and bulldoze through a move to pay performance bonuses worth almost R250 000 to undeserving officials at a council meeting tomorrow (Tuesday).
This comes after key documentation, specifically the annual report and the adjustment budget, were withheld from the opposition, while at the same time the chief whip tried to persuade the opposition to put their stamp of approval on the said documentation. The opposition, however, sensed something was out of place and quite by chance discovered a summary of performance bonuses to be paid out to section 57 officials. This includes a bonus of R103 550 for the municipal manager, plus a bonus of R70 365 for the director of corporate services and a bonus of R74 586 for the director of infrastructure and technology services. This is in spite of the fact that the municipality received a disclaimer of opinion in the 2010/ 2011 financial year, never mind that the adjustment saw the municipality’s R5 million deficit grown by R8 million, to give the municipality an overall shortfall of R13 million.
As far as the DA is concerned, this is completely unacceptable. We condemn the squandering of public money on the payment of bonuses to officials who have clearly not been performing as they should. This is seen in the fact that, on a local government level, there is no money to fix potholes, upgrade bulk water and electricity infrastructure, improve refuse removal, upgrade sanitation in rural communities, and so the list goes on. This said, the DA reiterates our call for performance assessments to be taken more seriously. Only then will the awarding of bonuses, or the lack thereof, be according to the performance of municipalities and their financial state, and not according to the whims of high flying MM’s.
The DA has attempted to make contact with MEC Kenneth Mmoeimang to warn him of what is expected to go down at Ubuntu municipality tomorrow. If the matter goes to a vote, the ANC will push through the wrongful bonuses with five votes to four. The council meeting must be stopped before taxpayers have to bear the brunt of even more wasteful and irregular expenditure. The DA calls on Mmoeimang to urgently intervene in this matter.
Issued by Andrew Louw, MPL
DA Northern Cape: Leader