Nokonwaba Dorah Matikinca (MPL)
Shadow MEC for Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs
The DA today tabled a motion in the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature to rescind the unlawful appointment by the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro of four “mayoral ward coordinators” to DA-controlled wards in the city.
The appointments of these former ANC-councillors by executive mayor Ben Fihla in 2013 are against the principles of constitutional democracy and the choice of the electorate. Furthermore, they were made in contravention of all existing local government legislation.
The positions were not advertised, nor are they part of the Metro’s organogram or any other structure.
The DA disputes claims in the media by city manager Mpilo Mbambisa that positions were not advertised because they were political appointments.
He said: “The political appointments are the prerogative of the executive mayor who took into consideration their experience and skills as they were public representatives.
“The appointments were requested by [Fihla] so as to ensure his visibility and proper office management of these areas, so as to deal with all perceptions of the metro being focused on certain areas and not others.
“The satellite offices were established in 2006 with no staff. These positions were approved by all relevant role players and/or directorates.”
My colleague in the legislature, Athol Trollip, is yet to receive any feedback from Cooperative Governance Minister Pravin Gordhan regarding his request for his urgent intervention.
These appointments are nothing other than an abuse of power and sheltered employment for ANC cadres.
We trust that the legislature will allow the rule of law to prevail and that the MEC for Cooperative Governance, Fikile Xasa will rescind the appointment and recoup the irregular expenditure incurred.