DA alleges Joburg officials refuse to help PR councillors with food parcel requests

Food parcels that are to be handed out to community members at the Denver Mens Hostel arrive. Picture: Tracy Lee Stark (Note, this picture is for illustrative purposes only.)

The party claims that it has been reliably informed that ANC councillors in the city are allegedly distributing food parcels to ANC members.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng has alleged that officials from the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) refuse to help its PR councillors with their requests for food parcels.

DA MPL Sergio Isa dos Santos said in a statement on Tuesday that the allegation “is deeply” concerning.

“I have been informed that all PR councillors within the Johannesburg Central constituency were allegedly refused assistance by officials from the social development department at the CoJ, while requests to the provincial department of social development remain unanswered,” Dos Santos said.

According to Dos Santos, when the DA’s PR councillors approached the officials at CoJ, they were informed that they have to submit their requests through the ANC ward councillors, “or were directly told that they will not assist DA PR councillors”.

“This is in direct contravention of Schedule 2 of the code of conduct for municipal staff members inter alia section 2(b) perform the function of the office in good faith, diligently, honestly and in such a way that the spirit, purport and objects of section 50 are promoted; and (e) act impartially and treat all people, including staff members, equally without favour or prejudice,” said Dos Santos.

The DA MPL further said that the party has been reliably informed that ANC councillors are allegedly distributing food parcels to ANC members, “while other members of the community who are in desperate need of food are not given any assistance”.

“It is not uncommon for the ANC government to refuse to assist DA PR councillors as this has been going on for years.

“The DA is calling on the CoJ to ensure that no food parcels are given to councillors to distribute and that the officials in the social development department oversee this process.

“Furthermore, we would also like to remind the ANC councillors that instructing CoJ officials to not assist with food parcel requests from DA PR councillors is a contravention of the councillors’ code of conduct,” dos Santos said.

Meanwhile, Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu, last week, said that no ward councillor should be found distributing food parcels during the lockdown.

READ MORE: No councillor should be found distributing food parcels, says Lindiwe Zulu

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu)

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