The Tshwane ANC caucus is up in arms over what it has described as the “unlawful extension” of embattled city manager Moeketsi Mosola’s special leave.
In a statement on Thursday, its regional secretary Eugene Modise said: “The ANC has received an absurd communique from the executive mayor Stevens Mokgalapa’s office stating that he has extended the special leave of the city manager Dr Moeketsi Mosola.”
Modise lambasted the fact that Mokgalapa had the indecency of sending this communique “while on an all-expenses paid Huawei study tour in China with his team” at a critical time when the city was faced with a “tense unrest”.
Municipal workers are on strike demanding a 18% salary increase, in line with what Mokgalapa’s administration had already given 64 senior staff in the municipality.
According to Modise, the ANC caucus was on July 25 part of a resolution to enter into a separation agreement with Mosola and their understanding was that council was prepared to offer him a golden handshake by paying him part of the remainder of his contract.
He said the council “also appointed Mr James Murphy [to replace Mosola] through a resolution as contained in the executive mayor’s report for a period of three months”.
According to Modise, the mayor was therefore in no position to extend Mosola’s leave as “he was no longer an employee of the City of Tshwane as per council meeting resolution”.
Mayoral spokesperson Omogolo Taunyane contradicted Modise’s understanding of the council resolutions, saying Mosola had been “given a document [settlement agreement] which he has still not signed”.
She said the council had hoped the city manager would have signed and vacated his office by today.
“However, since that has not happened the city manager requested special leave to carefully consider the proposal.”
Taunyane could only confirm that Mosola had not signed the settlement, and therefore he remained the city manager although he was on special leave.
The ANC has joined the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse in calling for Gauteng human settlements MEC Lebogang Maile to “immediately intervene and resolve the impasse that has been self-created by the executive mayor”.
Maile has already warned the city not to go ahead “with this ludicrous decision” of awarding Mosola the alleged R7 million golden handshake.
Read: Tshwane gives city boss secret ‘R7m’ handshake
Modise also revealed that the ANC was seeking legal advice “and will not hesitate to approach the court to reverse the illegal, nonsensical and illogical decision to extend Mosola’s stay in the City of Tshwane”.