Appointment of Kouga Municipality directors and the reasons why the DA decided to take the matter to court. You be the judge….
1. The Kouga Council appointed a selection panel of 5 councillors (ANC 4 and DA 1) to interview the potential candidates for the positions of Directors in KM in early 2012.
2. The final session of this panel was convened 11 June 2012 at 11 am with only 5 minutes’ notice being given to members of the panel.
3. The ANC Mayoral committee then met immediately after the above mentioned meeting on the 11 June 2012 to appoint the 5 Directors.
4. The Systems Act section 56 (a) states: the appointment can only be made by the full council and by implication, not the mayoral committee.
5. The successful (directors) applicants were then telephonically contacted and Mayor Koerat confirmed the appointments in writing the following day.
6. His letter started with the words: “You are hereby appointed by…”
7. The appointment of Directors can only be made if a Municipality has an approved organogram and such vacancies are reflected in the organogram.
8. At that time (and up to the present moment) KM has no approved organogram, as confirmed by the Municipal Manager, Mr. Fadi.
9. The same act also specifies that the Council, after consultation with the MM, may appoint directors.
10. On 29 June 2012, at a Council meeting, the appointments were approved by the ANC majority in Council despite strenuous opposition from the DA.
11. This was the only Council meeting where the appointment of directors was discussed and the MM was not present at this meeting to have his input as required by legislation.
12. During this Council meeting, the ANC strongly denied that such a Mayoral committee meeting ever took place and that the directors had already been appointed in writing. Furthermore, they denied that Mayor Koerat ever signed and dispatched the letters of appointment.
13. Although the DA was in possession of a copy of the minutes of the meeting as well the appointment letters signed by Mayor Koerat, and were willing to submit such to the Council, they were denied the opportunity to do so by the ANC majority in Council.
14. Strangely enough all records of the Mayoral committee meeting as well as file copies of the letters of appointment were destroyed from Council archives
15. At no stage during Council processes did the ANC majority in Council admit that the above processes occurred and thus no common cause could exist.
16. It was only in the answering affidavit on 11 September 2012 that the ANC for the first time admitted that the meeting of the Mayoral committee did indeed take place and that the Mayor did in fact issue letters of appointment pursuant to the ultra vires decision of the Mayoral Committee.
17. The ANC hereby admitted for the first time their wrong doings in the appointment of the directors.
18. The DA concentrated only on the legislative procedures that were not adhered to. We were not willing to debate the merits, qualifications and suitability of the candidate directors as it was our view that the entire process was illegal and had to be repeated according to legislation.
19. Responding to a question from James Selfe (DA) in parliament, the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs said that four of the six most senior officials ( Municipal Manager + 5 directors) appointed by KM have been invalidated by declaratory orders to enforce compliance with the Act.
20. It is interesting to note that all the Directors, as well as the Municipal Manager reside outside of Kouga and in fact they all live in Port Elizabeth.
21. One of the Directors is now issuing loaded political statements in the press which is contrary to the code of conduct for Municipal officials.
The DA is committed to clean and transparent governance and we will keep the ANC as well as senior municipal officials accountable in Kouga.
Issued by DA Caucus