Durban - The administrator sent to jointly oversee the affairs of the IFP-run Mtubatuba local municipality who was sent by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) had a tough time accessing his offices on Tuesday.
The administrator, Dr Siya Ntuli, was seen in widely circulated social media photos standing outside the gates with his bodyguards.
For hours, Ntuli who is not new to the municipality as its administrator was unable to access the offices located in the town of Mtubatuba in northern KwaZulu-Natal.
PHOTOS: Dr Siya Ntuli, the administrator sent by KwaZulu-Natal COGTA to oversee the affairs of the Mtubatuba local municipality has allegedly been locked out by staff, leaving him stranded in front of the gates of the municipal offices and no office to work from. @IOL pic.twitter.com/G25twz8Z2W— Sihle Mavuso (@ZANewsFlash) February 28, 2023
This was his first day at work after on Monday he was introduced to some of the councillors (IFP councillors boycotted the meeting) by the Head of Department of KwaZulu-Natal Cogta, Thando Tubane.
Tubane’s meeting was held in an open space outside the municipal offices after they were not granted access to them.
It is not clear who locked the offices or who issued the instruction that the gates should be locked at that time.
Ntuli was supposed to be introduced last week, but that was aborted when the municipality wrote to Cogta, saying it has picked up Covid-19 cases and it has to close the offices for deep cleaning.
UPDATE: There is now a stand-off outside the gates leading in and out of Mtubatuba local municipality offices where the administrator, Dr Siya Ntuli, who was sent by KwaZulu-Natal COGTA, was locked out. It is alleged that Ntuli’s convoy has now blocked the gates. @IOL pic.twitter.com/flOYEWOWt0— Sihle Mavuso (@ZANewsFlash) February 28, 2023
Cogta obliged and said it would come back on Monday and it did.
Introducing Ntuli to the ANC and NFP councillors on Monday, Tubane said Ntuli would oversee the accounts of the municipality with the municipal manager.
But when Ntuli had to start working on Tuesday, he had no room to work from and no one knows who issued the instruction to lock the gates to him.
According to the pictures circulated on social media, there were no security guards to open or close the door.
WATCH: IFP President and KZN legislature MPL, Velenkosini Hlabisa vowed that they would never accept Dr Siya Ntuli as the administrator of Mtubatuba local municipality because he is allegedly corrupt and the ANC government is aware of his past, yet they want to impose him. pic.twitter.com/xe7QMz0uxQ— Sihle Mavuso (@ZANewsFlash) February 28, 2023
An insider said the stalemate lasted for hours.
“He was not able to access the offices, it was total chaos while he was trying to get in and he left,” the source told IOL.
The department gave a brief response when asked by IOL about the stalemate and what it was doing to ensure that Ntuli was given space to work.
“The municipality is under administration, and section 139 of the Constitution empowers the MEC to appoint the administrator.
“The MEC has appointed Dr Ntuli to be an administrator of Mtubatuba Local Municipality,” it said in a response sent to IOL.
The municipality was placed under administration a few years ago after it was found that there was no accountability and there was rampant abuse of public finances.