Linda Dhlamini accused of holding Lekwa municipality ‘hostage’

He was recalled on 18 March 2018 but had since refused to leave the post.

The DA has accused Lekwa mayor Linda Dhlamini of holding the local municipality hostage after he brought in his supporters to come disrupt a council sitting.

In a video doing the rounds on the social media, the SANCO members are seen singing and chanting struggle songs, bringing the house into a halt.

The incident happened on 20 November 2018 at the municipal office in Standerton where the DA’s Tornado Nkambule was bringing a debate for a motion of no confidence against the controversial mayor.

The sitting had to be suspended by the speaker.

Mpumalanga DA shadow co-operative MEC James Masango said after the disruption of council, Dhlamini led a group of people carrying dangerous weapons who went to the speaker’s office, damaging municipal properties.

SEE ALSO: Lekwa municipal manager Linda Tshabalala term ends

Dhlamini, who is at loggerhead with ANC regional leader Muzi Chirwa, was recalled early this year by the ANC in the Gert Sibande region but has clung on his position.

The ANC wants him to leave the post and be replaced by regional treasurer Khosi Khota because of an “impasse” in the municipality “which affects service delivery” but Dhlamini supporters say the man is going nowhere.

ALSO RELATED: Lindiwe Ntshalintshali says decision against Linda Dhlamini stands

Masango said the ANC councillors who are an overwhelming majority in the council had agreed on a secret ballot.

“Service delivery in Lekwa is virtually non-existent as this municipality is not only failing to pay Eskom and the Rand Water board but it has also allowed raw sewage for flow unabated through the streets, around people’s homes and into the Vaal River for many years,” Masango said.

Lekwa is one of the five municipalities that Premier Refilwe Mtshweni last month announced had been placed under financial rescue by the provincial government.

The DA wants disciplinary actions against the mayor.

(edited by ZK)
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Mtshweni announces financial rescue for 5 municipalities

She announced a “financial recovery plan” is being implemented.

Mpumalanga Premier Refilwe Mtshweni has announced that 5 municipalities will be placed under financial rescue.

Mtshweni spoke in Skukuza during her government’s Lekgotla.

She said eMalahleni, Govan Mbeki, Thaba Chweu, Lekwa and Msukaligwa local municipalities have all been placed under a financial rescue plan.

She said as government they area “acutely aware” of the challenges that the Mpumalanga municipalities face.

“As you are aware, we have had to recently intervene in the Emalahleni local municipality in accordance with section 139 of the Municipal Finance Management Act,” she said this week.

“A task team led by provincial treasury and encompassing specialists in every element of the financial management ecosystem has been dispatched to the municipality and are currently working tirelessly to develop and implement a financial recovery plan,” Mtshweni said.

She added this was an effort to ensure that “we collectively address the issues of financial mismanagement” in municipalities as this was affecting service delivery.

She spoke at the Skukuza rest camp during a 3-day provincial government Lekgotla.

Mtshweni told government officials that a Lekgotla was meant to convene officials “in order to ensure that we centrally coordinate the programmes of our government in an effort to ensure that the programmes of the government are concomitant with priority areas aimed at tackling the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality whilst ensuring that our people continue to have access to the most basic of services”.

“The objective of this Lekgotla is two-fold. The first being that we must ensure that  we continue to align intergovernmental relations with the priority areas outlined above. Secondly, it is important to take cognisance of the fact that we must outline and collate our achievements , as Government, as we approach the end of this 5th democratically elected administration,” the Premier said.

(edited by ZK)

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ANC sharpens axe to chop defiant Standerton mayor

New engagements may see the party laying an ambush on the SANCO leader.

The ANC in Mpumalanga says their decision recalling the mayor of Lekwa municipality ‘stands’ and will try other means to make sure he leaves the post.

Linda Dhlamini was recalled on 18 March 2018 but has since refused to leave the post.

He was recalled together with Harriet Khotha, the municipal speaker, as well as chief whip Mapaseka Molaba but all three are still in their jobs.

Dhlamini, a provincial deputy secretary of SANCO in Mpumalanga, was elected unopposed the mayor of Lekwa during a council sitting right after the 3 August 2016 local government elections.

The ANC wants him to leave the post and be replaced by regional treasurer Khosi Khota because of an “impasse” in the municipality “which affects service delivery” but Dhlamini supporters believe this is a plan by the ANC to put people who will toe the line and continue corruption.

ANC sharpens axe to chop defiant Standerton mayor

Khosi Khota. PIC MfisoDIGITAL/ZK.

READ: Inside the deadly Standerton protests

They vow to fight and ensure Dhlamini remains the mayor.

Gert Sibande ANC spokesman Sabelo Sikhakhane said as a region they await a decision of the provincial executive committee of the ANC that will sit and “finalise” whether Khota becomes the new mayor or Dhlamini continues.

“The PEC will sit and resolve all the impasse that exist in Lekwa,” he said.

ANC acting provincial secretary Lindiwe Ntshalintshali said the decision they took on 18 March 2018 recalling Dhlamini “still stands”.

“You will remember that we have been having meetings in Lekwa, doing consultations and we made it clear that our decision still stands and there will be a certain process to implement it,” she said over the phone.

(edited by ZK)

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DA demands clean Standerton water

The Lekwa municipality in Standerton is said to be polluting the Vaal River crossing through.

The Democratic Alliance in Mpumalanga is demanding an end to water pollution.

The party is taking their fight to the Lekwa local municipality in Standerton to demand that the municipality stops polluting the Vaal River.

For many years, the Standerton waste water treatment plant has been channeling dirt into the river.

Provincial spokeswoman Dumisile Masuku said the Lekwa municipality is one of the 76 waste water treatment plants reported by the department of co-operative governance as polluting clean water sources across the province.

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“The municipality has done nothing for the people of Sakhile township who live with sewage flowing openly between their homes as it makes its way to the Vaal River,” she said.

Provincial leader James Masango will today lead a march to the offices of Lekwa municipality to deliver a memorandum demanding an end to the “wilful water pollution”.

(edited by MLM)

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‘I’m out’, says Tshabalala as term ends

Interviews are underway for a new manager of the municipality.

The manager of the Lekwa local municipality in the Gert Sibande district says he’s now an unemployed man and “time will tell” as to what he will do next.

Linda Tshabalala’s term as the manager of the Lekwa municipality in Standerton came to an end this week on 31 July 2017.

He said time will tell where he goes now.

“As what I’ll do next I think time will tell. Time will tell. My home is the ANC,” he said over the phone.

RELATED: Calls mount for Standerton mayor, manager to be fired

“I’d like to thank the people of Standerton for the opportunity. I had a great experience as the manager. I thank the ANC, the administration and business. [It] Was a great experience,” Tshabalala said on Tuesday.

He said now he is like the millions of others who are unemployed.

He was appointed the manager of the municipality in 2012.

The municipality’s Thobeka Mtshiselwa told 013NEWS late on Tuesday that the municipal manager post was already advertised.

“We are currently busy with interviews. Interviews started last week,” she said.

(edited by ZK)

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