The troubled Engcobo local municipality has appointed a new council speaker to fill the hole left by the late Siphokazi Nkele, who died in July after a short illness.
The new speaker, Teenage Mbolo, is not new to the position, having filled it for a five-year period after the 2006 local government elections.
He worked as chief whip in the council until his recent promotion at a special council meeting.
This led to reshuffling the mayoral committee by mayor Lizeka Tyali.
Former ANC Youth League provincial leader Khaya Bizana was moved from integrated planning and economic development (Iped) to budget and treasury. Mhlangabezi Mbenyana returns to Iped from being an ordinary councillor. Nobantu Macingwane is the new council chief whip.
“I worked closely with the late speaker [Nkele] and I know what needs to be done. Our challenge is public participation,” said Mbolo.
The Engcobo municipality has been in the news of late. The Daily Dispatch reported in July that the Mthatha High Court interdicted municipal manager Silumko Mahlasela, along with two senior managers, from doing their jobs. Mahlasela, chief financial officer Mzusekho Matomane and corporate services manager Vuyiseka Mviko allegedly had their contracts approved without proper processes being followed. The EFF took the matter to court and the three were placed on leave. The case continues.
The municipality is also part of an investigation by the Hawks. This is after a task team was formed in Pretoria to investigate its finances, along with those of OR Tambo and Mnquma municipalities. These investigations are still in progress. — firstname.lastname@example.org