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Jailbird eThekwini councillor freed from council duties

Awaiting trial, murder-accused ward 101 councillor Muzimuni Ngiba has been released of his duties as a councillor. Picture: Thokozani Mbunda

Awaiting trial, murder-accused ward 101 councillor Muzimuni Ngiba has been released of his duties as a councillor. Picture: Thokozani Mbunda

Published Jun 1, 2023


Durban — The DA eThekwini caucus chief whip, councillor Vincent Mkhize, said the ANC-led eThekwini Municipality should hang its head in shame over how it handled the jailbird, murder-accused councillor Muzimuni Ngiba’s debacle.

“For nearly a year, the municipality has been shamelessly paying a councillor behind bars, showering him with a salary and council benefits while he faces a murder charge.

“The municipality would have opted to sweep this scandal under the rug; without the DA’s pursuit of justice, the ANC would have continued indulging in their corrupt practices.”

Mkhize said the DA has been demanding the removal of Ngiba, and now, the speaker’s report has finally recommended his ousting.

“Council speaker Thabani Nyawose turned a blind eye as Ngiba missed three consecutive municipal council and committee meetings,” Mkhize said.

He said the speaker should have flagged Ngiba’s absence and taken immediate action, yet he chose to protect an individual facing a murder charge.

“This blatant disregard for the rules is precisely why our city is crumbling. The ANC’s wasteful expenditure is driving up tariffs and leaving our infrastructure in ruins. But the speaker aids and abets the collapse of our beloved city by allowing a prisoner to collect a salary, while ward 101 residents suffer.

“It’s time for accountability! The DA will not rest until Nyawose is held responsible for his actions,” he said.

This was after Nyawose said the council has finally decided to remove the incarcerated murder accused, ward 101 councillor Ngiba from council duties.

Nyawose said: “The policy states that all councillors must attend council and committee meetings. If the councillor does not attend these meetings, he would be charged with breaching council regulations and policies.

“Ngiba has missed more than three council sittings and committee meetings; therefore the council has charged him with misconduct … as the council, we have taken a decision to release him of his duties as a ward councillor.”

Nyawose said Ngiba was still receiving his council benefits and allowances, pending the outcome of the investigation.

Welcoming Ngiba’s removal, the EFF blamed the speaker for having kept him as councillor for far too long. The party said the speaker should be held accountable for how he handled the matter of Ngiba.

The DA asked the speaker what the council was going to do to recover taxpayers’ money that was paid to Ngiba.

The DA accused the speaker of not following the council rules by not acting fast enough on Ngiba.

The speaker argued that he had handled Ngiba’s situation in a professional manner, guided by council rules and regulations.

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