Opposition parties in KwaZulu-Natal are not happy with the ANC’s decision regarding eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede’s employment and have called for her dismissal.
The opposition parties in eThekwini have voiced their displeasure and disappointment at the outcome of the African National Congress’ (ANC) Provincial Executive Committee (PEC), which moved to request that mayor Zandile Gumede take 30 days of special leave.
This comes after Gumede was arrested for allegedly contravening the Municipal Finance Management Act in relation to the R208 million tender awarded in 2017 for solid-waste. Gumede was later released on R50 000 bail and is due back in court in August. The ANC has claimed that it will use this special leave to determine her fate within the party.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has been at the forefront of those who have called for the removal of Gumede as eThekwini mayor. The party’s caucus leader Nicole Graham scolded the decision to grant Gumede special leave.
“This means that Gumede will sit at home for 30 days and earn her monthly salary of R112,000, based on a yearly package of R1.35 million. All that will happen is that she will submit leave, continue to rake in taxpayers’ money and leave Durban in the lurch,” Graham said.
“Gumede has been a hopeless mayor and should be booted from office. This call by the DA has been supported by members of the public and fellow opposition parties.
“The sad part is that Gumede is still part of the regional task team, meaning the ANC still have faith in her. Our call is that it should not take the ANC 56 days to know that eThekwini residents deserve proper service delivery and committed leadership,” Graham added.
Asked about what would happen after her special leave by TimesLive, Gumede said she could not answer the question. “The people who can answer that are the ANC provincial chairman and secretary general, because the court is still investigating and I was arrested before the investigation could be completed,” she said.
She also said her lawyers did not agree with the 30-day leave of absence because the investigation was still not complete.