Constant demands for openness, transparency and accountability in the conduct of Plett affairs, backed by legal action, have ultimately led to the removal of Peter Lobese as Bitou’s mayor. Defeat at the hands of his previously supportive and protective colleagues is welcomed for the promise it holds that our councillors be held to account to the residents and the courts for their dereliction of duty over the years.
Despite enormous frustrations, the Plett Ratepayers’ Association has persistently written to the Mayor, Councillors, Municipal Managers, various Municipal officials, and Provincial MECs alerting them to malfeasance, suggesting ways to deal with issues, and demanding that there be openness, responsiveness and accountability. This relentless pursuit of rooting out corruption and mismanagement is bearing fruit. The following highlighted issues are now listed by council as needing urgent attention:
1. Abandonment of litigation defending the illegal decision to appoint Ngoqo as Municipal Manager;
2. Reconsideration of the approval of a boutique hotel infringing on Signal Hill;
3. Impetus for disciplinary action against corruption and malfeasance among municipal officials;
4. A promise of proper communication and consultation.
It is a major achievement for the people of Plett. It is a solid undertaking by council to be open and responsive.
What is conspicuous by its absence is an indication of what specifically will be done to address the chaotic situation in Supply Chain Management, procurement and awarding of tenders.
We have looked closely at budgeting and have made recommendations and provided input on what should and should not be included in future budgets. Through the generosity of Ratings Afrika we were able to provide councillors with a 15-page detailed expert analysis and projection of the financial state of affairs for them to use in the compilation of the budget.
We strongly believe that the opportunity exists for meaningful engagement and collaboration, and we welcome the recent commitment from councillors towards better governance. The Plett Ratepayers’ Association and all residents of Plett owe a debt of gratitude to our members, donors and our generous and capable legal representatives for their unstinting support.
Plettenberg Bay Ratepayers’ and Residents’ Association