OPINION

Lebogang Maile is misleading public on role of SARS in Tshwane – Mike Moriarty

Gauteng DA says SARS has not been engaged to address financial irregularities in City

MEC Maile is misleading public on role of SARS in Tshwane

17 May 2020

Note to Editors: A Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) circular regarding the use of Regulation 32 is attached here.

Recently, Gauteng Cooperative Governance MEC Lebogang Maile misled the public into thinking that the South African Revenue Services (SARS) had been engaged to address certain financial irregularities in the City of Tshwane.

He did so as part of his ongoing propaganda strategy to justify an illegal power-grab.

Bad things happen on everybody’s watch. To insinuate that when bad things were discovered to have happened in Tshwane that the DA ignores them is an absolute falsehood.

The fact is that shortly after the DA won the City of Tshwane in 2016 the City appointed a panel of legal firms to tackle legal matters, including financial misconduct and the recovery of funds.

There should be limits on how long a panel of firms should be in place. This was to avoid continuous use of one or other favoured company of lawyers.

Accordingly, the panel was put in place for 3 years.

This has now expired and Tshwane sits without attorneys, because unfortunately the ANC’s 9-month long destabilisation programme has been in place and the City was unable to put out a new call of  interest for a new panel.

To be clear, the City needs attorneys for all sorts of legal matters. It currently stands without a panel of attorneys for any legal matter, not just those involving financial misconduct.

MEC Maile wants to use Regulation 32 to use a panel from another agency of government. This is not permitted in terms of a National Treasury instruction, which states that you may appoint a company using regulation 32 but you may not use it to appoint a panel.

But Maile could not allow himself to be fettered by such an inconvenient directive if it blocked his political game.

Instead, he shouted out “SARS” in the context of investigations of the Financial Misconduct Board, when what was actually considered was using their panel of attorneys in the absence of such a panel that would ordinarily have been available within the City. However, they cannot do this as far as the Treasury is concerned.

Another Maile Myth has thus been exposed.

The current illegally appointed ANC Head Administrator, Mpho Nawa has since understood that he cannot use regulation 32 to appoint a panel.

Nawa has sneakily gone ahead to issue a tender, seeking to validly and legally appoint a new panel of attorneys which he should not be doing. These attorneys will tackle all sorts of legal matters, not just those of financial misconduct.

Issued by Mike Moriarty, DA Gauteng Provincial Chairperson, 17 May 2020