The United Democratic Movement (UDM) is astonished and opposes the mayor of Mbhashe Local Municipality’s decision to spend R2.5 million from public funds on a jol (party). The UDM is very shocked at the show of dubious decision-making, and one must wonder what type of logic led to this mind-boggling conclusion.

This expense has not been planned for or included in the municipality’s Integrated Development Plan (IDP). The funds came from important service delivery initiatives, and there was no council vote allowing such reckless spending.

This act illustrates the mayor’s gross misallocation of priorities, and it is a clear disobedience of the Treasury instruction to decrease spending.

Mbhashe Local Municipality, already infamous for its failures to provide for its citizens’ fundamental needs, now appears to believe that a jol is the answer to all of their issues. Perhaps he feels that a few hours of enjoyment will magically repair the crumbling roads or alleviate poverty.

The UDM cannot help but wonder about the reasoning underlying this decision. Is the mayor honestly certain that a party will solve the municipality’s long-standing problems? This is simply an example of mistaken priorities and a disrespect for the community’s well-being.

We ask the mayor to reconsider this perplexing decision and transfer the monies to initiatives that will really improve the lives of citizens. It is time for the municipality to put the needs of the community ahead of their own desire to have a good time.

The UDM will not sit back and watch as taxpayer funds are spent on frivolous festivals. We will keep a careful eye on the situation and will not hesitate to hold the municipality accountable for its actions.

The people of Mbhashe deserve better. They are entitled to a government that prioritizes their needs and works relentlessly to enhance their standard of living. It is time for the mayor to consider their priorities and put the community first.

In view of these concerns, we will seek the cooperation of competent authorities, including the Public Protector, in order to conduct a full investigation and take appropriate action.

Issued by:
Cllr Usivile Mboneli