The High Court in Bloemfontein has heard that the Mangaung Metro Municipality jumped the gun when it suspended City Manager, Tankiso Mea.
Mea has filed an urgent application to have his suspension set aside and declared unlawful.
His application was brought on the basis that he was not afforded an opportunity to give reasons why he should not be suspended.
Mea’s suspension came after the community of Mangaung took to the streets in protest to call for his removal from office.
Senior counsel for the Metro, Advocate Stefan Grobler, says the agreement is that the municipality will follow due procedures while Mea remains on voluntary leave.
Grobler says, “Look what the regulations relate to, what advocate Mea rightfully relies upon is that there needs to be a process and there needs to be a preliminary decision and then the invitation gets extended for the provision of reasons as to why there should not be a suspension, only then there will be a final decision being taken.”
He adds: “The municipality stance is simply that they are still busy with the process. What I can say is that regulations governing the relationship and disciplinary matters in any way with senior managers sets out certain procedures and municipality are of intention to follow that procedure.”
Earlier this month, a teenage boy was killed during violent protests in Bloemfontein.
He was allegedly shot and killed by a security guard. Police say the guard fired shots in an attempt to scare the mob at a warehouse and the 15-year-old boy was fatally wounded.
VIDEO: Residents were calling for the Mangaung Metro municipality council to be disbanded and the City Manager to be fired:
In February, the Democratic Alliance called on Mangaung Metro’s acting executive mayor, Lebohang Masoetsa, to investigate Mea.
VIDEO: Allegations against Mea include financial mismanagement, unauthorised and wasteful expenditure: