The Democratic Alliance will request the Public Protector and the Auditor General to investigate the alleged abuse of public funds by the Mayor of the OR Tambo District Municipality, Zoleka Capa.
This is the third major incident in which Mayor Capa’s OR Tambo District Municipality has been accused of the blatant mismanagement of public funds. Since 2008 over R55 million has been forked out as result of the purchase of five farms in Kwazulu-Natal which are allegedly in a state of decay. In 2009 R3, 5 million was spent on taking 200 people to Zambia’s Independence Day celebrations. Last week 27 people (eight councillors and 19 officials) were allegedly flown to a meeting in Johannesburg which should have been held locally within the municipality.
The latest incident of fruitless and wasteful expenditure is a clear contravention of the Public Finance Management Act. (This means expenditure which was made in vain and would have been avoided had reasonable care been exercised.)
We will also ask both the Public Protector and the Auditor General to probe what action the Department of Local Government and Traditional Affairs has taken as a result of the investigation requested by me into the farm purchase scandal in 2009. The department indicated in an answer to a legislature question that it was investigating the matter. This matter was first raised in August 2008 by Athol Trollip when he was a member of the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature and was given an evasive answer.
The failure of the ANC to act when the first allegations of mismanagement were raised has resulted in the further wastage of public funding. One gains the impression that Capa is untouchable because she is a member of the ANC National Executive Committee.
The OR Tambo District Municipality is one of the poorest areas in South Africa where there are huge backlogs in service delivery. One cannot afford to waste one cent of public funding on these kind of actions. This is an abuse of public funds, it’s an abuse of power and it must stop. This is once more a case of the elite wasting money while the poor continues to suffer.
For further information, please contact Bobby Stevenson, MPL on 082 775 3444.