Mmemezi about to get boot

Local Government and Housing MEC Humphrey Mdumzeli. Photo: Chris Collingridge

Local Government and Housing MEC Humphrey Mdumzeli. Photo: Chris Collingridge

Published Jul 2, 2012


Controversial Gauteng MEC for Local Government and Housing Humphrey Mmemezi will be fired before the end of this month.

The Star can reveal that the decision to fire Mmemezi – known for his abuse of his government-issued credit card and damaging a state vehicle – was to have been announced on Monday, but Premier Nomvula Mokonyane had to jet off to China on government business.

Impeccable sources told The Star that Mokonyane wanted to be in the country when she fired her errant MEC.

This time around, Mokonyane has the full backing of Gauteng ANC chairman Paul Mashatile and provincial secretary David Makhura. Mmemezi is Makhura’s deputy.

ANC members were concerned about the party’s public image, said sources. They were concerned that Mmemezi appointed his niece as his secretary, allegedly allowing her access to government vehicles despite her junior status. He also took her on various international trips, leaving behind his personal assistant.

Mmemezi’s office denied she was related to him, but The Star saw documents in which she gave Mmemezi’s home address as her address in 2007.

The Star investigation also revealed that Mmemezi used his credit card on various overnight stays in hotels and lodges around Gauteng. Early this year, he booked an overnight stay at a lodge in Krugersdorp, less than 5km from his house.

A fortnight ago, senior officials in the office of the Auditor-General and local government and housing asset management staff visited Mmemezi’s house to audit his assets. This followed allegations that some were bought with government money.

He ran an office from his house in 77 Bodenstein Street, which he fitted out with an expensive photocopier and furniture.

It is expected the items will be confiscated and returned to the Department of Local Government and Housing when he is fired.

Mmemezi will also lose the right to be chauffeured in an expensive Mercedes-Benz ML 350. He received this car on December 15 after he crashed another luxury government vehicle – a BMW X5 – on a private visit to KwaZulu-Natal.

The accident happened on November 11 but he failed to provide the Gauteng legislature with an accident report. The BMW is about to be sold on auction as scrap as a result of the accident.

Mmemezi will also lose his two assigned bodyguards, one of whom doubles as a driver. He will also not be dropped off and collected after his overnight stays at lodges and hotels, as he will now be expected to use his Toyota Fortuner for his private activities.

The MEC was controversially appointed to his position in November 2010 after the Gauteng ANC complained about the performance of then MEC Kgaogelo Lekgoro.

At the time, the ANC punted Mmemezi as the person who was going to turn the department around.

Before being appointed, Mmemezi was the human resources manager at Mogale City Local Municipality. One of his daughters, Nomvuzo Mmemezi, was a member of his staff there.

While still in the municipality, Mmemezi faced a charge of sexual assault, but the Krugersdorp Magistrate’s Court acquitted him of this in August 2009.

He also faced internal sexual harassment charges in the municipality, which appointed an advocate from the Joburg Bar to investigate the four claims; he was acquitted on these too.

The municipality also appointed another advocate from the same bar to investigate claims of unprofessional conduct and victimisation, but those investigations were never concluded.

Mmemezi became involved in labour disputes with various staff members in the municipality’s human resources unit, accusing them of fraud.

Mogale City is still involved in a labour dispute with Norman Mopitseng, one of the senior members in the labour unit.

Mmemezi accused Mopitseng of corruption in February 2009, and the municipality dismissed him in February 2010.

The SA Local Government Association overturned the decision to fire Mopitseng in April last year. He was ordered to return to work but Mmemezi – while already MEC – allegedly ordered the municipality to apply for a review of the verdict at the labour court.

Municipality spokesman Nkosana Zali refused to comment, saying the Mopitseng matter was sub judice.

The matter is due to be heard on Friday.


Career timeline

February 26, 1955: Born at Buthulo in the former Transkei.

1968: Started school aged 13.

1974: Passed Std 6.

1989: Continued studies through ABET and distance learning up to tertiary level. Qualifications he now holds include a

National Diploma in Transportation Management, a BA in Communications and Public Administration,

a Certificate in Housing Policy Development and Management, and

a Certificate in Municipal Management Development.

1995: Founded and led several ANC branches in the West Rand region. Has been a member of the ANC West Rand regional executive committee since 1995.


2000: Member of the mayoral committee of West Rand District Municipality.

2008: Resigned as councillor to take up a managerial position in Mogale City Municipality.

2010: Sworn in as a member of the Gauteng legislature. source:

[email protected]

The Star

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