‘No basis’ for suspending GBV accused senior traffic cop, says WC Transport MEC
Cape Town - A high-ranking traffic chief accused of sexual harassment continues to work as “there has been no basis provided on which to suspend the alleged perpetrator”, while he is being investigated regarding the allegation.
This was according to Transport MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela in response to a parliamentary question by Good Party MP Brett Herron about why the traffic official had not been suspended while a probe was conducted.
An investigation commenced when the allegations emerged last year, almost two months after the official was appointed to a senior position.
According to Herron, the GBV victim – having suffered trauma as a result of the alleged sexual harassment and not receiving any assistance from the department – was further victimised after allegedly being put through a “competency hearing”.
Madikizela denied the victim was subjected to such a process.
“A decision to suspend an employee must be based on the applicable legal prescripts. There has been no basis provided upon which to suspend the alleged perpetrator.
“It is not true that the department has not offered support to the complainant. Any support for the family as a whole is provided through the employee taking up the offer of support through the Western Cape Government (WCG) Employee Assistance Programme (EAP). Support has been offered on a number of occasions to the complainant,” said Madikizela.
According to Madikizela, as part of action to combat sexual harassment in the workplace, an additional nine Sexual Harassment Contact Officers (SHCO) were trained for transport and public works by provincial government employee relations.
“The SHCO are based in various regions and consist of male and female officers to attend to sexual harassment cases,” said Madikizela.
Head of department Jacqui Gooch had been assigned to investigate the case against the traffic chief which was alleged to have occurred between 2019 and 2020, Madikizela said.
Meanwhile, rape charges were withdrawn against a senior official in the provincial treasury after he had made a number of court appearances for the alleged rape of a seven-yearold.
National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the charges against the provincial treasury official could be reinstated.