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Politicians must reapply for chauffeurs

All chauffeur-driven members of the KwaZulu-Natal legislature will have to reapply for their chauffeurs in 30 days after a tougher policy was announced on Wednesday night.

Of the 22 MPLs with chauffeurs, 17 are from the ANC and the balance from the IFP.

File photo of Durban business elite, Shauwn and S'bu Mpisane's limo. Picture: Sherelee Clarke. Credit: INLSA

In April, the DA wrote to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela asking her to probe the appointment of chauffeurs for MPLs.

It said that most of the chauffeur-driven politicians were in perfect health and that the policy should only benefit sickly, disabled or aged MPLs.

This came after the KZN legislature heard how the chauffeurs were costing the province R264 000 a month.

It was highlighted that there were a number of loopholes in the legislature’s policy for assistance to MPLs with special needs, specifically drivers being wrongly assigned.

Explaining the policy amendments before the legislature’s rules committee on Wednesady, Mtholephi Mthimkhulu said that MPLs who wanted chauffeurs would have to provide a supporting document from a medical specialist as well as a medical certificate from a general practitioner.

Mthimkhulu, the chairman and deputy Speaker of the legislature, said that the legislature would then seek two additional medical opinions from specialists in the particular field who would advise on whether the special assistance should be approved.

The request would then be forwarded to the Speaker for the final decision.

Previously, all that was needed to approve a request for a chauffeur was a single medical certificate from a doctor.

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