The Lichtenburg-based Ditsobotla Local Municipality reportedly does not have money to pay their staff. An internal memorandum seen by the SABC News indicates that workers will not receive May salaries.
The municipality does not indicate when the salaries will be paid and what the reason for non-payment is. This is one of the many challenges faced by this municipality — whose council got dissolved last year. Following December by-elections, there’s still no stability in the municipality.
The Ditsobotla Local Municipality is currently under the mandatory financial recovery intervention — invoked by the provincial government. Yet there’s seemingly no improvement. Workers are now in limbo. They haven’t received their May salaries. One of them is the 53-year-old Phillip Nage.
“I am taking care of two families. My siblings are not working so I am providing for my extended relatives as well. They are also affected when I am not paid. They asked me this morning if I’ll make a plan. It pains me hearing my child ask that question,” Nage explains.
Chief Whip of the Democratic Alliance (DA) Ronald Matlholoa says the council was not informed of the financial woes.
“The corruption and maladministration is deepening in the municipality, hence the workers are not paid so far. We want to put it on record as the Democratic Alliance that no report was brought to council by the mayor or the accounting officer,” says Matlholoa.
Letlamoreng Mosiane of the Save Ditsobotla Movement shares the same sentiments.
“We have to pay workers. If you’re employed to come and drive the tractor, if it’s not there it’s not your problem, you have to get your salary so these people don’t care. You go inside to the notice board, it is full of municipal property that will be sold this week and we as councillors we don’t know,” Mosiane explains.
The Christiana-based Lekwa Teemane local municipality also released a communique, indicating that workers’ salaries will be delayed. However, the municipality later released an update saying an arrangement was made to pay the salaries. Provincial spokesperson for the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), Fana Mokoena says these two municipalities are a testament of municipalities that have collapsed.
“It is worth noting that municipalities under the ANC government are paralyzed, they can’t move at all. This corroborates actually our long standing view as the EFF that municipalities cannot function, hence they cannot pay employees while they get financial support from national and provincial government,” says Mokoena.
The Ditsobotla Local Municipality declined to respond to our inquiry. The municipality says the memo indicating that workers will not be paid this month was for internal purposes.
Ditsobotla Municipality allegedly does not have money to pay May salaries: