EMLM head’s appointment in dispute

The Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality (EMLM) administration authority may appear to be undermined by the municipal manager after the technical service department director was appointed without the administrator’s approval.

This was revealed in a leaked email addressed by the administrator, Monwabisi Somana, to municipal manager, Nokuthula Mgijima, on September 1, when the subject read: “Appointment of staff on the payroll without the pre-approval of the administrator.”

The unstable relationship between the two crucial powers in the municipality is nothing new.

In the email, the administrator clearly states clauses 4(a) and (k) as the terms of reference which outline the role and responsibility of the administrator against the municipal manager, as conferred on the administrator by the MEC.

“The municipal manager will continue to perform her other powers that are not related to financial management, but everything that has financial implication must first be ratified by the administrator, and (k).

“The municipal manager shall present to the administrator all reports (including recruitment) that have financial implications before them being presented to political structures.

The final approval of any recruitment will have to be granted by the administrator,’’ Somana wrote.

In the email, the administrator said appointments had been presented to him for final approval.

He added that, as had been previously communicated to Mgijima, such appointments were considered irregular and could not be affected.

‘’Any cost incurred for deviation thereto will be carried by those responsible for such appointments.

”Also, be reminded that the municipality is currently in court over unlawful appointments at a great cost to the fiscus of the municipality.’’

In response to the email in which she copied the mayor, Luleka Gubula, and the CFO, Mgijima wrote: “It is with regret that the administrator is unable to interpret the terms of reference (TROs) or is selective of interpreting and applying these TROs.”

An insider said the appointment still happened in spite of the technical service director,Nkosinkulu Zwelethemba, not being registered with the council of engineers, adding that a similar incident had occurred in the employment process of the current supply chain manager and the revenue manager who, according to him, did not meet the requirements of the positions.

The source said the municipal manager and the CFO were hell-bent on undermining the authority of the municipality.

‘’It is not appropriate for them to flout every regulation to do with the benefaction of people who do not meet the requirements, who neither qualify nor have the capacity to deliver to Enoch Mgijima

”The revenue manager does not meet the requirement, he does not have the necessary qualifications the advert requires or meet supply chain management, ’’ the insider said.

They also flouted the policy of recruitment. There is an email from the executive mayor, Luleka Gubula, where she says this needs to stop.

EMLM spokesperson Lonwabo Kowa said: “The issues and correspondence in question are internal matters. ”A statement will be issued when any of these matters become issues of public interest.”

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