ATC100519: Report on Oversight Visit to Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality
REPORT OF THE SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS ON OVERSIGHT VISIT TO NGAKA MODIRI MOLEMA DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY – DATED 19 MAY 2010
1. Background and Overview
1.1 The Select Committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs having considered the request made by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on 10 March 2010, to consider and report on the extension request of the intervention in terms of section 139 (1)(b) of the Constitution at Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality by the North-West Provincial Executive Council (PEC), reports as follows:
1.2 In terms of section 139(1)(b) of the Constitution, when a municipality cannot or does not fulfil an executive obligation in terms of the Constitution or legislation, the relevant provincial executive may intervene by taking any appropriate steps to ensure the fulfilment of that obligation, including assuming the responsibility for the relevant obligation in that municipality.
2. Problems Identified at the Municipality by the PEC
2.1 On 16 July 2009 the Provincial Executive Council (PEC) in North-West Province resolved to invoked section 139 (1)(b) of the Constitution in the Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality. The main issues which led the PEC to invoke the provisions of section 139(1)(b) of the Constitution and assuming the executive responsibilities at Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality, was a result of a thorough eight months assessment of the situation by the Provincial Department of Local Government and Housing, as well as the National Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs. During the assessment period, a ministerial task team led by the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs was established to identify areas and sources of conflict that impact negatively on service delivery and governance in the Municipality.
2.2 The findings of the ministerial task team relates to performance of functions by the Municipality beyond its constitutional and legislative mandate; dysfunctional political governance structure; approval of salary adjustment agreement was in breach of the main collective agreement; non–compliance with the legislative provisioning governing local government sphere; irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure; breakdown of service delivery and instability caused by mismanagement of union strike; dismissal of the Municipal Manager and allegation of fraud, corruption and mismanagement.
2.3 Subsequent to the ministerial task team findings, the MEC responsible for Developmental Local Government and Housing appointed an Administrator to execute all executive obligations and functions of the Municipality, with effect from July 2009.
3. Reason for the Extension of the Intervention Period
3.1 The Premier of the North-West Province, Ms Modiselle, requested an extended period of six months for the appointed Administrator to continue assuming the executive obligations of the Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality. This was based on the outstanding work which was not completed, in order for the Administrator to facilitate a smooth hand-over process for the Municipality to resume its executive functions.
3.2 Some of the outstanding work relates to the appointment of section 57 managers including the Municipal Manager, financial challenges of the Municipality, legal delays with regard to the officials who were charged, pending legal judgements with regard to a contractor (Mvula Trust) and the performance audit has since started. Furthermore, the Administrator was awaiting instructions from the Auditor-General with regard to disciplinary actions against the Mayor. However, achievements have been recorded in other key performance areas.
4. Committee Observations and Opinion
4.1 The Committee is of the opinion that there is a need to pay greater attention on service delivery issues, and the Municipality must be responsive and address the problems raised by the community with the necessary speed. The Municipality should treat every service delivery problem with the necessary seriousness it deserves. That all stakeholders in the municipal jurisdiction must assist the transformation process, within the framework of co-operative government work.
4.2 Furthermore, the Committee wants to emphasize that the extension of the intervention period should serve in facilitating a proper hand-over process after all the pending main issues have been successfully addressed in the Municipality. Equally, the extended period should facilitate the normalisation of the current hostile environment, as well as the filling of critical vacant position to address capacity challenges in the Municipality.
5.1 The Select Committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs recommends as follows:
5.1.1 The NCOP approves the extension of the intervention period at Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality by a further six months, as requested by the North-West Provincial Executive Council in terms of section 139 (1)(b) of the Constitution.
5.1.2 The Minister for Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs should approach the Hawks to pursue criminal investigation in all cases of financial irregularities and fraud in Ngaka Modiri Molema District Municipality, as a matter of urgency, and a report be forwarded to the NCOP in this regard.
Report to be considered.
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