Emfuleni municipal manager placed under precautionary suspension
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Embattled Emfuleni local municipality manager Lucky Leseane has been placed under precautionary suspension for alleged misconduct and poor performance.
His suspension came after the special council meeting that was held on Thursday.
The suspension followed a series of reports which were tabled before the council.
In the meantime, Emfuleni has appointed Executive Director for Shared Services Thabo Ndlovu as the acting municipality manager while Lesene remained under investigation.
In a statement released on Friday afternoon, Emfuleni mayor Reverend Gift Moerane said: “The Executive Mayor wishes to assure the community of Emfuleni that the municipality will continue to work together with the Gauteng Provincial Government to ensure that the provision of service delivery is not affected as a result of the council decision to put the municipal manager on precautionary suspension.”
Leseane came under fire last for allegedly blocking a criminal investigation against officials who were implicated in irregular expenditure of more than R670 million. This was revealed by a forensic company, Comperio Consulting, which was appointed in 2018 to probe irregular expenditure through the award of tenders to various companies in the Vaal.
Meanwhile, EFF Sedibeng regional chairperson Isaac Khithika said the party has noted the suspension.
“Emfuleni has for many years failed to provide basic services to the people and this was due, primarily, to the vacuum in leadership. This vacuum continues to exist to this day and the EFF in Sedibeng, through its superior logic, as a turnaround strategy called for the total removal of the ANC-led administration through dissolution,” said Khithika.
He said the EFF will view the removal of Leseane as a step in the right direction if Moerane, his executive and the entire ANC-led administration is removed.
“The changing and suspension of individuals without the removal of the collective through a vote is like trying to solve a long term problem with a temporal solution. It is not the first time in this term that a temporary suspension is placed on an individual pending investigation. We believe for real changes to happen, suspension should be put on the entire ANC-led administration through a vote by the masses, otherwise this exercise is bound to fail like many others before it,” said Khithika.
Emfuleni DA caucus leader Teboho Tlokwe said this was a council resolution following calls for Lesane to account.
“We feel he did not do his duties with regards to consequence management and we asked the mayor to take action against him. We told the mayor to ask him why he should not be suspended and we were not happy with his response, and the mayor put him on a precautionary suspension,” said Tlokwe.