‘Jobs for pals’ scandal surfaces in Cape Town

Alderman JP Smith opening the Annual Film Industry Briefing. Image: @CTICC_Official/twitter

Alderman JP Smith opening the Annual Film Industry Briefing. Image: @CTICC_Official/twitter

A process followed in relation to the appointment of Robberts was found to be defective, irregular, and inconsistent with the principles of policy.

The Cape Town city council has been roped into a job-for-pals scandal linking the department of safety and security’s Alderman JP Smith and Richard Bosman.

A leaked classified report compiled by law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr found that a process to appoint policeman Petrus Robberts to a senior position was irregular and inconsistent with the human resources policy.

Demands for action against the Democratic Alliance-led council have been made after the report implicated officials for abusing power.

The alleged report tables email correspondence between Bosman, Robberts, and Smith, where an offer was made to Robberts and a position created before the post existed.

Other findings, according to an IOL report, indicate a meeting was held in then mayor Patricia de Lille’s office to discuss Robberts’ appointment. Those present at that meeting included former city manager Achmat Ebrahim, De Lille, and Western Cape police commissioner Mzwandile Petros.

The ANC has since accused the DA-led council of attempting to sweep the matter under the carpet following the leak.

ANC caucus leader Xolani Sotashe said heads needed to roll following the findings.

“We will take the report to the public and show them the corruption at the city. There’s an attempt by the DA majority in the council to sweep the report under the carpet by disregarding its recommendations for action to be taken against those involved. We cannot allow that to happen.”

The fresh allegations of nepotism were discussed in a meeting on Thursday, where a consensus was reached that the city’s executive director of safety and security, Bosman, was guilty for his appointment of Robberts as policing and law enforcement director.

Bosman also admitted to investigators that he was put under political pressure for his appointment of Robberts. The investigation was the result of a meeting in November, where council agreed to have the matter investigated. This was after the city manager received a call from a member of the public about the allegations against Bosman and his role in the appointment. He has allegedly admitted that he could have handled the shortlisting process better.

The report states: “In relation to the averment by Bosman that there was political pressure in relation to the appointment of Robberts, it is evident that a fair, transparent and competitive process was not envisaged in relation to the appointment prior to the process having commenced.

“We are accordingly of the view that the process followed in relation to the appointment of Robberts was defective, irregular, and inconsistent with the principles of the policy.”

Thursday’s council meeting was chaired by speaker Dirk Smit, who said council resolved the allegation against Bosman as “less serious”, meaning he could receive a verbal or written warning, or be instructed to take a rehabilitative course.

Robberts filled his post as police director on August 2, 2015.

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