Eastern Cape: OR Tambo District Municipality spends close to R3 million on overtime in just three months

BY TAI CHISHAKWE - AUGUST 28, 2014

The Eastern Cape’s OR Tambo District Municipality has reportedly spent close to R3 million on overtime in just three months - with some employees getting double their salaries. This was revealed in a report tabled before the municipality’s corporate services portfolio committee on Tuesday.

The news comes as Eastern Cape MEC for Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Fikile Xasa, called for tougher measure against poor performing municipality's - which include the OR Tambo. You can read more on it here.

According to the report, the R3 million was paid out in April, May and June this year. The report cites the office of OR Tambo Executive Mayor Nomakhosazana Meth as the biggest recipient - with Mayoral Personal Assistant Boitumelo Mongoato reportedly claiming more than R124 000 in overtime for the three months.

N Mqambeli, also in the Executive Mayor’s office, reportedly received R35 191 in April; R25 078.94 in May and R7 000in June while a Ms ZA Matshaya claimed R32 000 in April; R18 960 in May and R23 370 in June.

Several other employees of the OR Tambo District Municipality claimed between R1 000 and R18 000.

Then a Miss T Mini, who works in the municipality’s Community Services Directorate, reportedly claimed more than R32 000 for overtime in April while the Infrastructure Directorate is said to have spent R665 000 in overtime for 226 employees in April; R763 000 for 245 in May and R768 000 in June for 239 employees.

"Overtime is still a problem and we do not have control over it because it is recommended by directors and approved by municipal manager for payment. The problem is the continuous payment of overtime by departments monthly and sometimes employees changing overtime to emergency work. There are no clear motivations and employees do not qualify for overtime paid," the OR Tambo report, by Corporate Services Director Vukile Mhlelembana, read.

The report, which will be discussed by council next week, also raised suspicions of ghost employees as some do not show up for audit verification. Apparently a private audit firm earlier on found that some “employees” were still being paid despite them no longer working for OR Tambo or having died.

Not a peculiar case

The King Sabata Dalindyebo Municipality is said to have paid cleaners and drivers millions in overtime last year.

Mandla Gogo, of the Congress of the People (COPE) ,said the Hawks should conduct an investigation into finances at the OR Tambo district Municipality.

"We are against the looting of funds. Here people get more than they are paid, which means that there are no controls,” he said.

"They do not perform their duties during working hours, so that they can stay late and then claim for overtime work."

Photo caption: OR Tambo Executive Mayor Nomakhosazana Meth.