Madileng and Kubheka in bitter fight for the soul of JS Moroka

Madileng and Kubheka in bitter fight for the soul of JS Moroka
GUNS DRAWN: Dr JS Moroka municipal manager Thambi Kubheka (L) and executive mayor Thulare Madileng (R) are engaged in a tit-for-tat battle for the soul of the rural municipality that is fast escalating into death threats and claims of assassination attempts. GRAPHIC BY 013NEWS/MLM

Kubheka says Madileng is corrupt to the core but Madileng on the other hand hits back, saying Kubheka is a liar of note.

A battlefield has now been set for JS Moroka local municipal mayor Thulare Madileng and suspended manager Thambi Kubheka over the soul of the municipality. 

Kubheka who makes a string of allegations against Madileng, including abuse of municipal resources, took power as the municipal manager in March 2019 and is currently receiving community support to be reinstated to his position.

The community is currently protesting Kubheka’s suspension and said it occurred “unfairly” as it was announced despite not getting majority of council votes. They say those who want Kubheka on suspension are those who “want to benefit from corruption”.

Kubheka’s supporters say soon after being appointed the manager of the municipality the outspoken Kubheka discovered “there was rot going on”.

“He conducted an investigation following the findings of an audit report. He found that out R3.2 million is spent on a monthly basis on fuel and other cars have not been working for the past 2 years but the fuel bill keeps coming and keeps rising. One of the TLB that belongs to the municipality was found at one of the mines in Mpumalanga. 

“When the municipal manager is acting on the corrupt councillors and staff they suspend him through council sitting but many voted that he must stay however the speaker overruled it and suspended the municipal manager,” one of Kubheka’s supporters said. 

Kubheka this week Thursday told The Citizen newspaper that soon after being appointed the municipal manager early this year he almost got killed.

He said it was an assassination attempt after he stopped a construction project from going ahead. 

He said it was a contract to build a fresh produce market in Maphotla village, on which R40m had already been spent. Kubheka said the project began more than 10 years ago and had always been prolonged in order to loot from state coffers.

He said this resulted in him being given bodyguards. “I was driving from work when I noticed a car following me. Moments later the vehicle started driving at speed and I sped off. They lost control of the vehicle and almost hit a rock. I then heard gunshots as I sped away,” he said.

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He claimed the municipal budget in May 2018 allocated R3m to the project but the following June, another R5m was pumped to it. 

“This was despite the R8m advanced by the provincial government the previous year,” Kubheka said.

Madileng said as a mayor he had asked manager Kubheka to compile a report to take to council for a resolution about the things he says but nothing’s been done.

“I said to him give us a report on the issues you are raising because, some of them we are aware of, so that a proper process unfolds. All he does is make these allegations to feed the narrative that I am corrupt. What is it that I am supposed to do?” asked Madileng. 

He said Kubheka has turned himself into “a superhero manager”, ignoring proper processes to be followed in dealing with such audit findings.

Madileng added Kubheka’s “defiance” has turned the community against him and his municipal executive members. 

Madileng said it was a lie that the motion to put Kubheka on suspension was defeated.

“My life is also being threatened because he has painted me and my executive [as] corrupt but everything must be tabled in council, which is a highly regulated space,” the mayor said. 

(edited by ZK)

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