Sacked municipal official fights for his job

Sacked municipal official fights for his job.

Sacked municipal official fights for his job.

Published Apr 3, 2024


A Senior official at the City of Tshwane is at loggerheads with the municipality after he was fired in connection with the payment of more than 500 contract workers who received salaries without having performed any duties for almost a year.

The legality regarding the matter came under scrutiny from the Auditor-General (AG) after it emerged that the workers hadn’t performed any duties while employed from November 2019 until October 2020.

The former governance and support officer was sacked after being implicated in a forensic probe commissioned by the municipal manager in 2021 and finalised in July 2022.

The details about the officer’s fate and looming fight with the municipality are contained in the AG’s report in which the City obtained a qualified audit opinion for the 2022/2023 financial year.

The report revealed that the officer had approached the South African Local Government Bargaining Council in a bid to overturn the decision to fire him. The matter is set for hearing this month.

The AG’s report flagged the appointment of workers by stating that the municipality had paid them salaries for work not done “due to proper recruitment process not being followed as no work was allocated to employees”.

The employment, according to the report, resulted in non-compliance with Section 65 (2) (a) of the Municipal Financial Management Act.

“The non-compliance is likely to result in the material financial loss of R88 412 643 if not recovered. The municipality disclosed R34 048 301 and R53 846 760 in note 76 to the 2020/21 annual financial statements as the current and prior year financial loss respectively,” the report said.

On May 20, 2021 the matter was brought to the attention of the accounting officer who commissioned a forensic investigation to identify officials responsible for payments made without any work having been performed, and the likelihood of recovering the monies paid.

Following the investigation in July 2022, a criminal case was opened against the former governance and support officer and member of the municipal council in December 2022.

The case was transferred to the Pretoria Central Specialised Commercial Crime Unit in May 2023, according to the AG’s report.

“The accounting officer finalised the disciplinary process that was initiated in October 2022 and dismissed the implicated official in August 2023. The official lodged a dispute with the South African Local Government Bargaining Council and the matter is set for hearing this month,” said the report.

The criminal case that was opened in December 2022 is still ongoing and the AG found that the material irregularity was resolved.

Pretoria News