Dept condemns acts of violence in Lekwa, Emakhazeni

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Nelspruit - The Department of C-operative Government and Traditional Affairs has strongly condemned the recent spate of violence by certain residents in Lekwa and Emakhazeni Local Municipalities.

"The department appeals for calm and peace to return to the area and urges the community to report unruly elements who promote acts of violence and destruction of property to the police.

"As we deal with the issues we appeal to the community to give us an opportunity to deal with the issues. The department would also like to assure the public that the issues in Lekwa are receiving urgent attention," said departmental spokesperson Simphiwe Kunene.

The department has reiterated government's commitment to dealing with all issues that affect communities.

"In all areas where issues have been brought to the attention of government we have put in place processes to deal with these issues, and we will continue to do so.

"The department will engage in dialogue and work with communities to ensure that issues are resolved," he said.

In Lekwa a recovery plan of action has been developed for the municipality and is being driven by acting municipal manager Jabu Sindane.

With regard to a report that has revealed that certain officials have been implicated in misrepresentation of information, fraud, corruption and theft, a recovery plan has indicated disciplinary action that will be instituted against all officials implicated by charging and suspending them.

A cost recovery programme against all officials who have received monies irregularly and section 57 managers who were illegally paid bonuses is being instituted, and they will be expected to pay back the money.

At the same time the department will lay criminal charges against all officials, and service providers who have defrauded the municipality and all monies will be recovered.

The department is also seeking a legal opinion on those Section 57 managers who were employed without the proper qualifications.

"Investigations will also be conducted around the resignation of the municipal manager and the chief financial officer of Lekwa, if it was done procedurally and whether there are no monies that they owe the municipality," Kunene said