ABOUT 200 Nelson Mandela Bay traffic officers protested outside the City Hall yesterday in a bid to highlight alleged nepotism by authorities in the short- listing and interviewing of candidates for posts in the municipality.
Three shop stewards affiliated to the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) were suspended last Friday for allegedly trying to block alleged irregular processes by their employer in recruiting candidates.
Traffic officers who spoke to The Herald on condition of anonymity said the recruitment process was flawed and their leaders were being victimised for highlighting the issue.
Traffic officers claimed the employer recruited inexperienced family members.
Three officials – Liboy Nangu, Nobantu Mgudlandlu and another identified only as Nazo – were suspended for trying to put a stop to the alleged irregularities.
A number of officers then staged a sit-in at the reception area of metro traffic chief Hamilton Nzotoyi at the Sidwell Traffic Department on Tuesday, while another delegation met with him in his office.
This was followed by another meeting at the City Hall the same evening, attended by politicians, management and union officials.
All parties agreed that the suspensions would be lifted and that acting municipal manager Themba Hani would sign the agreement. However Hani, who was not at the meeting, refused to do so.
This angered unionised traffic officers, who descended on the City Hall yesterday and demanded the immediate lifting of the suspension of their three colleagues.
"The parties reached an agreement on Tuesday but he refuses to sign for the suspension to be lifted,” a union official said.
Municipal spokesman Roland Williams said he was unable to comment as it was an internal human resources matter.