Public protector flails Solly Msimanga for 'failing to apply his mind'

24 May 2019 - 16:25 By Zingisa Mvumvu
Former Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga failed to apply his mind when appointing a chief of staff, said the public protector. File photo.
Former Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga failed to apply his mind when appointing a chief of staff, said the public protector. File photo.
Image: Thapelo Morebudi

Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has flailed former Tshwane executive mayor Solly Msimanga for failing to "apply his mind" in the controversial appointment of his former chief of staff, Marietha Aucamp, who did not have a post-matric qualification.

Mkhwebane said on Friday that Msimanga "should have reasonably known" that Aucamp did not have proper qualifications.

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"He [Msimanga] should have obtained legal advice from his officials on appropriate ways to appoint staff in his office," said Mkhwebane.

"Instead he allowed the officials not to follow the normal recruitment and selection process including placing educational requirements and experience that Ms Aucamp did not possess, therefore prejudicing other candidates who were best qualified for the position."

Mkhwebane also found that former Tshwane city manager Lindiwe Kwele, as the accounting officer, had failed in her duties on the same appointment as well as the appointments of Samkelo Mgobozi and Stefan de Villiers who also did not meet minimum requirements.

There was no remedial action against Msimanga as Mkhwebane noted "that the city of Tshwane has taken steps to reverse the irregular appointments".

Mkhwebane cleared Msimanga on another complaint that he had misled the public by making pronouncements banning the use of blue lights in the city, about the reconstitution of the mayoral committee (Mayco) and the utilisation of a fleet of BMWs by members of the Mayco.

The allegation on reconstruction of the Mayco was dismissed as it was "not substantiated" with Mkhwebane adding that Msimanga was in law empowered to appoint and dismiss "as he deems fit".

On the blue lights matter, she found that no process was undertaken to bring about by-laws banning the use of blue lights.

Mkhwebane also "did not come across any evidence" that Msimanga had violated the law and misled the public regarding his statements on the fleet of BMW vehicles.


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