A number of Madibeng officials have been suspended and dismissed following a qualification audit by the Madibeng municipality.
Newly appointed Madibeng mayor, Douglas Maimane, said during a press conference on Friday that the audit followed allegations of employees being appointed with fake qualifications. “So far two officials have been suspended and one employee dismissed. We are expecting many more suspensions in the next weeks,” he said.
Maimane said various investigations were done following allegations of fraud and corruption in the recent past but the reports were never reacted upon. He said this will now be followed up and all those found guilty of corruption will be suspended and subsequently dismissed. They will also be criminally charged.
Some of the corruption cases currently being investigated include fraud in the municipality’s treasury and budget department. “This department is one of the areas greatly affected by corruption and the municipality is in the process of instituting a forensic investigation.”
In the water and sanitation department, Madibeng officials colluded with service providers and some were paid without doing any work. This is also being investigated.
Two officials were also suspended after allegedly selling RDP houses and municipal land.
“We have found lots of duplicate payments as a result of officials colluding with businesses. This has been going on for a long time.
The municipality is also investigating officials selling jobs where qualifications are not considered. “We have managers in offices who don’t have matric. The extent of irregular appointments is huge. There is a network of criminal activity in Madibeng. It is much bigger than we thought. It is extensive and shocking,” Maimane said.
During a question and answer session, a representative of Vametco Bushveld Mine asked Maimane where the money was that the mine donated to the municipality for a road that was supposed to be built. The mine donated R1.6 million but the road was never built. Maimane said the mine’s donation was never used for what it was intended and that the money was untraceable. “We are investigating into whose pockets it went. I apologise that Madibeng failed to honour its commitments. This will be investigated.” The representative told Maimane that the mine would be willing to invest more if the municipality delivers on its proposed action.
“The scope of corruption is much bigger than we thought. Over 100 officials may face action. This is all going to be acted on. We want a corruption-free municipality that can deliver services,” he said.