IFP goes to court to block Zandile Gumede swearing in, Newsline

Durban – The IFP will ask the high court to set aside the swearing in of former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede as a member of the provincial legislature.

Outlining the official provincial opposition’s onslaught against corruption, leader Velenkosini Hlabisa said yesterday that the IFP had also reported a string of dubious deals involving provincial money to the Special Investigation Unit and the Competition Commission.

Referring to Gumede, he said it was “irresponsible and unfortunate to have someone doing nothing, earning more than R1 million (a year)” while so many people were unemployed.

Hlabisa said the party had ap­proached the speaker of the legislature, who referred the IFP to the provincial leadership of the ruling party.

“The ANC leadership did not even acknowledge receipt of the letter. Now we are going to court.”

Hlabisa asked why the ANC had removed the mayor, who is facing corruption charges involving more than R400m, if there was nothing wrong.

He said it was typical of the ruling party to redeploy people accused of wrongdoing.

“If we allow this, it will carry on unabated.”

The party is expected to issue a statement on its progress next week.

Mzomuhle Dube, spokesperson for Gumede’s supporters, said it was “not within our space to comment”.

However, he suggested that it was “illogical” to suggest she had not been doing her work.

ANC provincial head of communications Lennox Mabaso said: “The provincial government would like to warn against plagiarism of reports already tabled by the premier and the provincial government to the public.”

He said the KwaZulu-Natal government appealed that, at least, copyright law which requires acknowledgment of sources must be observed.

“The provincial government has in various media briefings made public reports, which are now cut and pasted as new information to dupe the media.”

He said the provincial government was in favour of fighting corruption.

“The provincial government welcomes anyone committed to promote clean governance as an ally.

“The creation of an ethical and incorruptible government, including in municipalities, is a key priority in the KZN government.

“Corruption is a cardinal sin that should be fought and conquered.”

He said South Africans were witness to the action the government had taken where wrongdoing was proven.

“The KZN government will act without fear, favour or prejudice on any allegations.”

Hlabisa said “the rot of corruption lies deep in KZN”, turning to allegedly dubious deals involving personal protection equipment, sanitiser deals as well as alleged food parcel theft during the Covid-19 lockdown.

He also questioned what had happened to provincial government money allocated to the 2018 funeral of Inkosi Vela “Imisebe Yelanga” Shembe, alleged dubious disciplinary action after a sanitary pad scandal and a sports project in Umzimkulu.

On the Covid-19 cases, he said IFP investigations found that two companies belonging to a family in Verulam earned more than R136.5 million from the KZN provincial government in PPE procurements.

On Shembe’s funeral, to which the KZN government allocated R4m, Hlabisa said: “As is usual, the immoral implementers in government helped themselves to some of this money.

“We are waiting for answers and action to be taken on the culprits of this looting.”

The Independent on Saturday