Top DA leaders in the Eastern Cape on Wednesday marched to the Mnquma local municipality in Butterworth against alleged corruption.
As municipality employees might not get their salaries at the end of November, DA Eastern Cape leader, Nqaba Bhanga, Phesheya Kwenciba constituency leader Veliswa Mvenya and provincial spokesperson Mlindi Nhanha handed a memorandum of grievances over to acting Executive Mayor Ndyebo Sikhelenge.
Mnquma is one of the three municipalities identified by the Hawks as the hub of alleged corrupt activities in the province.
Nhanha said they could not allow opportunistic government officials to continue robbing the people.
“We handed [over] our memorandum and this municipality has gone bankrupt, workers are advised to bring their own toilet paper and Telkom has cut the telephone lines and no one can operate without telephone lines,” Nhanha said.
“There is a huge risk that workers might not be paid by 25 November.”
Nhanha said the provincial national government had put money into the municipality but millions had been stolen by service providers and some ANC leaders.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) regional spokesperson Luxolo Tyali confirmed that there is a case regarding the alleged corruption.
“The case is due to be heard on 21 November in the Butterworth Magistrate’s Court. It involves a R10 million refuse bag tender that was awarded to businessman Sive Nombembe, who died in a car accident in August.
Nombembe was arrested alongside municipality’ official Zanele Mbewu, ANC Amathole regional chairperson Thembalethu Ntuthu and Mnquma municipal manager Sindile Tantsi, who also died in a car accident.
It is reported that the tender was awarded to Big Event Boy manager, Nombembe.
Upon receiving the funds, Nombembe deposited amounts ranging from R15 000 to R100 000 to Ntuthu’s FNB bank account.
In October, Grahamstown High Court granted an order in favour of the NPA’s Asset Forfeiture Unit and the Assets Forfeiture Investigation to recoup taxpayers’ money from Ntuthu and Nombembe’s assets.
“We are here to protest against corruption. This municipality must be placed under administration.”
“We urge the NPA to ensure that all those found guilty of corruption face the full might of the law by invoking, among other laws, the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act,” Bhanga said.