The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Northern Cape requests an urgent investigation from the MEC for Co-operative Governance, Human Settlements & Traditional Affairs, Bentley Vass, into an ongoing jobs-for-political-pals scandal at the Umsobomvu Local Municipality.
The municipality is currently advertising posts for general workers. On the prescribed application form, a copy of which is attached here, applicants must declare their political party affiliation.
In the public sector, senior managers or board members are prevented from holding office in political parties. It is a sensible precaution to prevent political interference in daily administration and it enables the fair, equitable delivery of services to residents. This precaution, however sensible for senior management, is unnecessary for general workers.
In fact, there can only be one reason for the municipality to ask for a declaration of political affiliation. The top of the application form states that, “The purpose of this form is to assist a municipality in selecting suitable candidates”. Clearly, the Umsobomvu management thinks that political loyalty determines whether or not someone is diligent, efficient, or capable of performing the task at hand.
DA councillor Johan Matthee of the Umsobomvu Local Municipality also received reports that applicants had been coerced to take out membership of the ruling party in hopes of employment. While alarming, it is not a new tendency for the ruling party to force political loyalty down the throats of the hungry and the poor in the province. It is nothing new for the ruling party to take advantage of the economic desperation that it creates through the implementation of ill-thought economic policies.
We cannot allow for this unfair labour practice to continue unchallenged, especially not as the provincial unemployment rate already exceeds 45%. MEC Vass must step up to his responsibilities as a public representative for the entire province, not just for the cadres in yellow shirts, and he must investigate this matter urgently.
Issued by The DA