Tshwane – New Tshwane mayor Stevens Mokgalapa announced on Monday that the controversial multimillion-rand GladAfrica contract, which has cost the city hundreds of millions and is worth as much as R12 billion, will soon be terminated.
The decision will only take effect mid-year though to give the city time to find an alternative.
Mokgalapa succeeded Solly Msimanga, who had a tenuous relationship with city manager Moeketsi Mosola. At least three attempts to suspend Mosola by Msimanga failed as a majority of council voted for him to remain in office, despite the irregular tender appointment.
But unlike his predecessor, Mokgalapa had a cordial relationship with Mosola and they have been working together in the past week on service delivery programmes, he said on Friday after announcing his new mayoral committee.
“The relationship between the city manager and I is cordial and well. I met with him almost four times since my appointment last Tuesday,” he said.
“We came up with an accelerated service delivery plan and programme with full briefing of issues of service delivery. We discussed the auditor-general’s report and remedial actions that need to happen.
He already made a decision to cancel the contract last week.
The GladAfrica contract wasn’t the least of the City of Tshwane’s woes, as more than R5 billion was spent irregularly in the previous financial year.
This happened as more than R1 billion has already been irregularly spent in the current year. The city has also failed to recover a large part of its debt, Auditor-General (AG) Kimi Makwetu found last month.
In a report leaked in January, Makwetu listed a number of wasteful and irregular expenses by the municipality amounting to R5,017,315,467 in the 2017/18 financial year.
In the current financial year, it showed R1,647,191,170.
He said reasonable steps were not taken to prevent the waste of city funds.
The majority of disclosed irregular expenditure was caused by noncompliance of the municipal supply chain management (SCM) regulations.
The irregular appointment of engineering consultants GladAfrica in the 2018/19 financial year, amounting to R317 million, was also a contributing factor.
More than a billion rands of irregular expenditure was as a result of the contravention of SCM legislation, while 91% of this irregular expenditure was found during the auditing process and was not detected by the municipality’s monitoring process.