In response to recent reports in the media regarding matters pertaining to the internal affairs of the institution, Lepelle Northern Water (LNW) convened a media briefing on Monday.
LNW Chief Executive, Phineas Legodi said that reports to the effect that he has been placed on precautionary suspension on 7 May are devoid of all truth.
“I wish to state unequivocally that in all capacities that I worked at LNW, including that of Chief Executive, I have never been placed on any form of suspension or any manner of disrupting my work. I am still in active and unthwarted employ of LNW as the Chief Executive,” Legodi said and added that this information continues to cause confusion within the organisation and that it is a violation of his right to fair labour practice.
Legodi also confirmed that a request for clarification that was directed to the Minister of Water and Sanitation on 7 May has met with no response.
Term of the LNW board
Legodi confirmed that the term of the LNW board ended on 30 March but that the minister requested the board to remain in place. It was thereafter learnt that the minister recently pronounced that a new board will be appointed with an executive caretaker at the helm of the administration, placing the current chief executive in an awkward position.
“The board therefore sought the services of the court as the final arbiter,” Legodi stated and emphasised that the appointment of a new board without following due legal process was flawed.
Allegations of maladministration
Legodi stated that allegations of maladministration are still under investigation. “To this end, the existence of maladministration is just talk meant to tarnish the image of our organisation,” Legodi said.
Allegations of corruption
An investigation into allegations of corruption and fraud involving a board member is ongoing and has been extended to include the other board members and the chief executive.
“This speaks to the board’s determination to ensure clean governance within its ranks without fear, favour or prejudice,” Legodi said, adding that he will welcome a lifestyle audit of the finances of board members and himself.
Story & Photo: Barry Viljoen