Three senior officials of Polokwane Municipality were charged with misconduct and received charge sheets last Friday.
Thembi Nkadimeng, Polokwane Executive Mayor, addressed a networking session with the media on Wednesday and confirmed that Chief Financial Officer, Fikile Mudau; Director Corporate and Shared Services, California Phanyane and Director of Transportation Services, Molatelo Rapetsoa were charged and will face disciplinary hearings soon.
A source within the municipality confirmed that the charges relate to supply chain management issues and follow an investigation by National Treasury and an independent forensic auditor that led to the suspension of a number of senior managers during the second week of August.
The officials who initially received letters of intention to suspend were Mudau, Phanyane, Rapetsoa, Director Community Development, Ndavhe Ramakuela; Director: Community Services, Henry Lubbe; Director: Technical Services, Nditsheni Sikhauli and Director Planning and Development, Matome Makgoba. After considering the replies of the officials, Council deemed the allegations against the officials to require further full and proper investigation and thus took a decision to suspend Mudau, Phanyane and Rapetsoa from duty.
“The suspensions were with full pay and shall continue for a period of three months ending on 18 November 2015. Should the disciplinary proceedings not commence prior to 18 November 2015, the suspensions shall automatically lapse,” Nkadimeng, was quoted to have said in a media release issued on 19 August.
“Regarding the charges against the Directors of Community Development, Community Services, Technical Services and Planning and Development, Council has noted that the allegations against these Directors all relate to procedural irregularities in performing their duties as members of the Bid Adjudication Committee. The allegations also show that the Directors may have incorrectly interpreted or applied the Supply Chain Management Regulations in adjudication of bids which are referred to in the National Treasury’s reports. The common factor in the representations of these officials is that apart from the role they played during the meetings of the BAC, there is no additional conduct in which they were involved which implicates them in allegations of misconduct,” Nkadimeng reported. The officials were therefore not suspended and could continue with their daily duties.
Tidimalo Chuene, Communications and Marketing Manager of the municipality, commented: “Please note that the process established by Council to look into matters of supply chain management is still underway. From time to time once steps related to the process have been taken Council will receive such reports and communicate relevant information or outcomes of processes to the public.”
Nkadimeng also confirmed that the investigation was ongoing and that other officials may be charged as the process unfolds.
Story: BARRY VILJOEN
Photo: California Phanyane, Fikile Mudau and Molatelo Rapetsoa.