Zululand mayor accused of colluding with radical forum to get rid of official
Thulasizwe Buthelezi, mayor of Zululand District Municipality, has been accused of interfering in the allocation of tenders.
Last year, the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs called on the Zululand District Municipality’s council to investigate allegations that Buthelezi, had interfered with tender processes.
Speaking to the Sunday Tribune, head of the Department of Technical Services at the municipality, Emannuel Sibusiso Ngcobo, said the troubles started when he had a fallout with Buthelezi who wanted to give tenders to his friends and relatives.
“The last straw was when hitmen came to my office threatening me to resign or risk being killed; they said they had been paid by the mayor. I was seen as a stumbling block to corruption.
“I suffered from depression. I thought about my family before deciding not to set my foot there again. I left without resigning from my post,” he said.
However, Buthelezi denied such claims. He said it was a ploy by Ngcobo, who was aided and abetted by a senior IFP councillor who is on a crusade to tarnish his image.
Buthelezi said Cogta has launched three investigations against him based on these allegations and the council has never been presented with the outcomes of those reports.
“I have never interfered with or participated in any tender processes at the municipality,” he said.
Meanwhile, on Thursday, Mduduzi Edward “Gaddafi” Sibiya cut a lonely figure when his lawyer Lwazi Mnguni asked Durban magistrate Anand Maharaj for an adjournment after co-accused Thabani Derrick Mzulwini, also the spokesperson for Amadelangokubona had reported ill.
The duo was out on bail following their arrest at the Elangeni Hotel in February for threatening Ngcobo.
According to court papers, Mzulwini and Sibiya introduced themselves to Ngcobo as policemen from the Hawks in Durban and said they could offer him protection as they knew he was having problems with Buthelezi.
Ngcobo said before he met Mzulwini and Sibiya at the hotel, he asked a police friend to come along because he did not trust them.
“I also tipped off the Hawks about the meeting on Friday afternoon at the hotel. During the meeting, the men changed their tune, they said they had been paid by the mayor to tell me to resign or be killed.
“I refused and said they must tell the mayor to buy me out of the three-year contract I have signed.
“We then met again on a Sunday and that is when Hawks pounced on them,” he said.
Buthelezi refuted ever plotting with the notorious group.
“I don’t even know any member of Amadelangokubona. Why would I need to threaten Mr Ngcobo?
“I’m the mayor - he is just a manager with a five-year contract.
“I think Mr Ngcobo’s alleged depression is causing him to hallucinate. I encourage Mr Ngcobo to approach the law enforcement agencies if he has any proof that I have broken the law,” he said.
The court matter was adjourned to next month for a trial date.