- Tensions in the North West Province remain high as residents wait to hear the fate of Premier Supra Mahumapelo
- The province was engulfed in violent protests two weeks ago as residents of Mahikeng demanded Mahumapelo resign or be recalled by the ANC
- Poor service delivery, corruption and maladministration of the provincial government has seen tension in the province rise in recent years
North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo faced an uncertain future. Tensions in the province remain high as residents continue to call for Mahumapelo’s removal from office and reports indicating that the ANC is seriously considering who to replace him with.
An eerie and fragile calm is currently in effect in Mahikeng, which was engulfed in violent protests two weeks ago. Frustrated and angry residents took to the streets of the provincial capital to voice their dissatisfaction with Mahumapelo and his government.
Calm was restored when President Cyril Ramaphosa returned to South Africa a day early from a trip to the UK and promised residents of the province that he and the ANC’s leadership would look into their complaints and take appropriate action.
Briefly.co.za gathered that poor service delivery, corruption and maladministration in the provincial government has seen tensions steadily rise in recent years.
While residents of the province cant lay the blame for all the problems in the province at the feet of Mahumapelo, he hasn’t done much to improve the lives of ordinary people since taking office in 2014.
We take a look at the top reasons why people are fed-up with Mahumapelo and his administration.
1. Corruption allegations and maladministration
Mahumapelo has done himself no favours in this regard. Amid the mounting allegations of his personal involvement with the Gupta family and state capture, Mahumapelo hasn’t exactly been at the forefront of running a transparent administration.
Two separate audit reports show that although the North West had a less than stellar report card before Mahumapelo took office, his administration has done nothing to improve the outlook for the province.
The Auditor General found that the 2015/16 outlook for public entities in the province remained poor with seven being disclaimed. The AG found that a lack of effective monitoring by provincial leadership and departments were negatively affecting the performance of these entities.
The AG also found a lack of management contributed significantly to rampant irregular expenditure. The province had more than R13 billion of unresolved irregular expenditure on its books. This trend continued into the 2016/17 financial year.
"Of specific concern is the audit outcome of the premier's office, which has remained qualified for the last two years with increasing irregular expenditure... The lack of improvement in audit outcomes indicates that the provincial executive leadership was not interested in our messages and that, overall, there were poor accountability and consequence management," the report said.
The AG noted that provincial management had failed to properly address the root causes of mismanagement and corruption. The report found that there was a lack of consequence management for continued transgressions and poor performance.
2. Poor service delivery
The heart of frustration in the province and the major reason why residents are calling for Mahumapelo to be removed from office is poor service delivery which has plagued the province in recent years.
Schools have been incorrectly commissioned and housing projects have either not been completed, or have been delayed for years.
Some housing projects have suffered from such terrible build quality that they have had to be demolished and rebuilt, this despite the contractor being paid in full in almost all instances.
Residents throughout the province have grown increasingly frustrated and disillusion with the provincial government for failing to deliver on project after project.
3. Recent controversies surrounding Mahumapelo
Various scandals and controversies involving Mahumapelo have been made public in recent times, this has served to further alienate the premier from his base of supporters.
Mahumapelo is alleged to have shunned the state-owned IT service provider and has preferred to use a private entity called Nepo Data Dynamics. In February, the Hawks raided his office looking for proof of a multimillion-rand contract between the province and Nepo Data Dynamics.
Mahumapelo is also accused of personally authorising a trip to India by senior health department officials. This trip was allegedly paid for by a Gupta-linked company Mediosa.
Health officials flew to India to inspect Mediosa’s high-tech mobile clinic technology. This, in turn, led to a dodgy deal between the province and Mediosa which is currently being probed by the national Treasury.
A couple of weeks ago ANC Youth League president Collen Maine shocked the nation when he claimed Mahumapelo had introduced and facilitated his meetings with the Guptas. Maine said he was willing to testify to this fact in court or when he is called to appear before the state capture inquiry.
The ANC is likely to decide Mahumapelo’s fate during the next NEC meeting, which is scheduled for later in May.
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