Tshwane city manager Moeketsi Mosola
Pretoria - The South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) has threatened to take legal action against the City of Tshwane over the “illegal” readvertisement of a metro police chief post.

Regional union secretary Mpho Tladinyane said the stance was taken after consideration that the second advert, contained additional requirements such as military and policing skills, was illegal.

He said the new requirements were at variance with employment regulations that governed recruitment processes for metro police chief vacancies.

And in a letter written to city manager Dr Moeketsi Mosola, Tladinyane demanded that he nullify the newspaper advert because it was ridden with illegal errors.

The advert in question was published in newspapers three weeks ago. It stipulated that experience in policing and military services were among the requisite skills of candidates interested in the position of metro police chief.

At the time, MMC for community safety Derrick Kissoonduth defended the decision to change the scope of requirements of a metro police chief post.

He said the added requirements - of policing and military skills - were because the city was looking to attract candidates from a bigger pool of professionals. He said: “We have some names from quite a number of people who have already applied.”

According to him, the city wanted a disciplined person to take over the post a post left vacant after Steve Ngobeni reached a mutual agreement with the city to part ways.

The controversial advert was the second published since Ngobeni’s resignation in April.

In his letter, Tladinyane wrote: “We further noted that the second advert shows some changes in respect of inherent requirements of the post.”

He told Mosola that the advert was not consistent with the recruitment process.

“The employer is reminded that the two adverts have different requirements,” said Tladinyane.

He said the advert gave the impression that the post was tailor-made to suit someone who didn’t have all the expected competencies.

“Such a practice is tantamount to corruption and nepotism,” he added.

The readvertisement was incorrect, misleading and should be nullified, he said.

Tladinyane also called for the initial advert to be considered because it complied with both national legislation and the staffing policy.

He said Samwu would take legal action against the city if it failed to respond positively to its demands.

The inclusion of experience in either policing or military services contradicted Regulation 11 of Act 1989, dealing with the employment of a metro police manager.

The act stipulated that the post for the metro police chief could only be filled by someone who had qualified as a traffic officer.

The officer, according to the regulation, must be in possession of a traffic officer diploma and a municipal management qualification.

In terms of the outcome of a meeting of metro police chiefs that took place on February 10, 2009, non-members of the metro police could be appointed as police chiefs.

At the meeting it was resolved that “members of the SAPS do not complete traffic training or municipal police training therefore do not qualify as members of a municipal police service as required by the SAPS Act”.

It further said: “It is therefore clear that neither a traffic officer, ex or present, nor an SAPS member (ex or present) can be appointed as municipal police chief.”

Pretoria News