Limpopo municipal speaker under scrutiny for stockpiling food parcels

Limpopo municipal speaker under scrutiny for stockpiling food parcels

- Joyce Mahlo, speaker of Maruleng municipality, is under investigation for allegedly breaching the ANC's policies on food parcels

- She has been accused of keeping food parcels in her home and handing them out to friends, family and ANC members only

- The ANC has warned councillors not to get involved in the distribution of food parcels

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Joyce Mahlo, speaker of Maruleng municipality in the Norman Mashabane region of Limpopo, is under investigation by the police for contravening the Limpopo Covid-19 Command Council and lockdown policies.

Specifically, she is being investigated for allegedly keeping food parcels in her home. Opposition parties have accused her of only handing out food parcels ANC members, friends and relatives.

The distribution of food parcels has strick policies which have been issued by Limpopo Premier and ANC provincial chairperson Stan Mathabatha. learned that recent allegations have been made in the province that councillors are using food parcels for political leverage or only distributing them to friends and relatives.

Additionally, some councillors have been accused of ignoring the prescribed lists created by the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa).

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The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) and the SA Police Service (Saps) have confirmed that they have investigated a number of ANC councillors and some have been suspended.

Mahlo responded to The Citizen with: “I am afraid I am not going to give you any comment now because I have not been furnished with any charges by the SAPS. I will wait until I am charged and then I will give you my comment, my son.”

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) reacted angrily to allegations that Mahlo was not handing out food parcels fairly. They called for her to resign.

National police spokesperson Brigadier Vish Naidoo has confirmed that Mahlo is under investigation.

“I can confirm that a ward councillor of Kanana in the Maruleng municipality opened a case of corruption on 25 April after another senior councillor allegedly distributed donated food parcels to only one sector of the community. No arrest has yet been made,” said Naidoo in a statement.

EFF regional chair Pontsho Mashumu said that her actions represent the organisation she belongs to.

“An apple does not fall far away from the tree,” said Mashumu. “Her behaviour resembles that of the organisation she represents – the ANC."
“It is just unfortunate that … her bad behaviour could influence others.”

Limpopo ANC provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane has told councillors to not get involved with the distribution of food parcels to maintain transparency.

“The ANC will take action against those found to be distributing the food parcels in contravention with the laws, policies and regulations as articulated by the prescripts of Sassa and the national government under the tutelage of President Cyril Ramaphosa,” he said.

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