The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Limpopo wants Basikopo Makamu, MEC for cooperative governance, human settlement and traditional affairs, to urgently intervene in the sale of property belonging to the embattled Mokglakwena municipality.
The municipality was placed under Section 139 administration in December, to turn around its dismal financial affairs. It incurred more than R1.17 billion in wasteful, fruitless and irregular expenditure that saw it occupying the second-last spot, after Tshwane, in 157 municipalities with poor financial management.
The Limpopo High Court last year ordered the municipality to pay more than R3.9 million it owed a service provider, plus R1.3 million for costs.
The municipality failed to settle the matter. As a result, a notice was printed in the legal section of the Bosveld Review last week, advertising the sale in execution of almost the entire contents of the municipal building and 16 vehicles, including a waste truck and tractors.
“Should the sale continue, the municipality will not be able to function or render services to its citizens,” DA provincial leader Jacques Smalle said yesterday.
Smalle said Makamu must urgently file an application for a stay of execution and to apply for rescission of judgment.
Makamu said the matter was receiving attention. “But that will not be enough, Makamu must hold those accountable for the legal mess that the municipality finds itself in,” Smalle said.
The party last year asked Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to investigate the municipality’s R1.17 billion irregular expenditure after countless community outbursts calling for action.
But the municipality’s financial woes seems to have not yet gained traction.
“The administrator needs a more robust approach to turn around the finances and cut down expenditure, which must include getting rid of incompetent and politically connected officials,” Smalle said.