File photo: DFA.
File photo: DFA.

‘Hostage’ drama in Sol Plaatje’s council chambers

By Sandi Kwon Hoo Time of article published Jul 23, 2019

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Kimberley - A “hostage” drama unfolded inside the council chambers at the Sol Plaatje Municipality on Monday, where the executive mayor, Patrick Mabilo, and several other officials were apparently prevented from leaving.

After about an hour an altercation ensued with a lot of finger pointing.

It was reliably learnt that a kidnapping charge has been laid against a Sol Plaatje municipality councillor.

Raw human waste was also dumped inside the building and the cashier desks had to be closed to members of the public during yesterday morning’s strike action.

A black bag containing faeces was also thrown into the entrance of the offices, whereupon the glass doors were locked by security.

Services, including the collection of refuse, was disrupted for a third day while the municipal buildings were largely left deserted with only a few employees at their desks.

Some staff members left the building and stood outside while others decided not to report for duty at all.

“While we are not being prevented from working, the environment is not conducive. How are we expected to work with the smell of faeces in the office? They cannot penalise us for not being at our desks because we cannot work under these conditions.

“If something is not done soon to dissolve the factional battles that is crippling the municipality, there could be a bloodbath between workers, councillors and the mayor, who is being undermined and disrespected.”

Spokesperson for the Sol Plaatje Municipality, Sello Matsie, said service delivery, including the manual payment of municipal accounts, the purchase of prepaid electricity and refuse collection were affected yesterday.

“We were not able to allow the garbage trucks to leave the municipal yard for fear of the vehicles being targetted.”

He stated that most payments for municipal accounts were made electronically or through cellphone banking.

“The cut-off date for payments is usually the fifth of each month so the strike did not have a major impact on the manual payment services.”


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