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NCOP asks Public Protector to probe Knysna Municipality corruption claims

The NCOP last week considered the matter following hearings and has now completed its report.

Public Protector logo. Picture: Supplied

CAPE TOWN - The National Council of Provinces (NCOP) has requested the Public Protector to probe the Knysna Municipality over corruption.

The NCOP last week considered the matter following hearings and has now completed its report.

The request follows a petition submitted by Knysna resident, Mike Hampton, in 2015.

The petition, which is dubbed the “Love Knysna petition”, was submitted by Mike Hampton in 2015 and was first heard by members of Parliament in February 2016.

Nine complaints have been referred to the Public Protector and one to the NCOP.

Hampton, a Knysna resident and activist, alleges that a number of tender irregularities and illegal appointments of senior staff have been picked up.

The NCOP will now have to wait for the Public Protector to investigate the matter before reporting back on the issue.

NEW MAYOR

There's still no clarity on the future of the mayorship in Knysna. Mark Willemse is waiting on the Democratic Alliance (DA)'s charge sheet against him but for now, he says he's not resigning.

Willemse was elected by council after former mayor Eleanore Bouw-Spies was recently removed when DA councillors supported an opposition motion of no confidence.

Western Cape DA leader Bonginkosi Madikizela met with him over the weekend to discuss, among other things, his resignation as mayor. Madikizela says the party will be issuing a statement on the outcome of the meeting.

Meanwhile, Willemse has told Eyewitness News he's been informed by party leaders that he's facing disciplinary action.

“I’m just awaiting the charges at this stage to take further legal advice on my situation. I haven’t resigned. At this moment in time, I’m just waiting for the charges.”

Willemse has been accused of contravening a section of the DA's federal constitution which states any member is guilty of misconduct if he or she publicly opposes the party's principles or repeatedly opposes published party policies, except in or through the appropriate party structures.

During an interview with CapeTalk last week, Willemse, who stepped down as Eden District Speaker shortly after being named mayor, said he “had to do something” to save the municipality. He said the Hawks were investigating a case of maladministration in the municipality.

LISTEN: What’s happening in Knysna is madness - WC DA leader

Additional reporting by Monique Mortlock.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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