THE DA notes with concern the delay in presenting the Kabuso Report progress report to the NMB council. Given the level of public interest in the report and the amount of negative publicity that the municipality received as a result, more importantly, given the fiduciary duty of council to ensure that the findings of the Kabuso Report are thoroughly investigated and interrogated, council has no choice but to deal with the report in a comprehensive, decisive and transparent manner.
The DA is appalled at the lack of information presented in the report to council at its meeting of August 7. Council remains the ultimate decision-making body of the institution, and cannot be expected to take informed decisions on matters of public importance without being provided with adequate and complete information.
We also wish to highlight that glaring discrepancies have now occurred between the council resolutions taken on this matter on December 8 last year and the recommendations in respect of the status report tabled at council last week.
The simple truth is that council resolves on matters such as Kabuso and the administration is compelled to implement the resolutions of council. The information presented in the scant report to council on August 7 not only goes against the resolutions taken by a majority of the members of council, it flies in the face of the institution of council, a body constitutionally bound to act at all times in the best interests of the metro and its residents.
It cannot be in any way acceptable for the residents of this metro to be expected to accept a blatant distortion of the will of council as expressed in the original resolutions taken by council.
Yet another grave concern that must be raised is the fact that after a year and a half the metro still has not been able to assess adequately the revenue loss incurred by the metro due to non-compliance of any of the companies named in the Kabuso Report. Further, the metro has still not concluded the investigation into possible misconduct of some of the institution’s staff members.
The question begs: why is this taking so long? Is the metro genuinely committed, and does it have the moral fortitude and will to properly deal with this report in the manner required by the council resolutions taken?
The DA demands that urgent action now be taken in properly finalising all matters related to the Kabuso Report in a decisive manner. It therefore proposes that the acting municipal manager urgently arranges a formal briefing session to which all councillors be invited to discuss the proposals in the status report made to council and that the council resolutions be instituted without further delay.
Failing this, the DA will be left with no option but to take the matter of the failure on the part of the metro to implement properly the council resolutions to the MEC for local government and traditional affairs as well as the office of the public protector. This matter has been allowed to drag on for far too long with still no end in sight and the residents of this metro deserve better.
Retief Odendaal, DA councillor for Ward 6, member of the municipal public accounts committee and the budget and treasury standing committee, NMB