Today the saying goes: Whatever Danny Jordaan touches turns into a pigsty. Not even a month after his farcical launch of the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Police Force, which was launched years behind schedule, Jordaan’s metro has fired the police chief.
Pinkie Mathabathe was hired in 2014, at an annual salary of more than R1 million. At the time she had no staff and could do nothing but spend her municipal salary while doing sweet blue bugger-all. Then in April she was given impromptu staff and now she is history.
Residents have long been calling for a Metro police force, especially the people living in the gang-infested northern areas of Port Elizabeth. The council adopted a decision to create a metro police department in 2009 but the process was delayed by infighting, budget issues and kak management.
Then former Tshwane Metro police boss Pinkie Mathabathe was appointed as chief of the Nelson Mandela department two years ago despite there being no Metro police department.
Last month, more than two years late, Jordaan launched his Metro Police force. But now, three weeks after the launch, Mathabathe’s been fired following a disciplinary hearing.
In the meantime, the municipality claims its Metro Police department remains fully operational despite no evidence that they are actually doing anything.
Last month, the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) said the launch of the City’s metro police service was a farce with municipal workers given uniforms and ranks without police training. Jordaan’s speech had to be cut short when disgruntled Samwu members stormed Port Elizabeth’s City Hall where the launch event was playing off like a soapie.
Angry union members claimed they had not been properly consulted about their impending roles as Metro Police officers.
Watch this space for a follow up on another Jordaan disaster, or… no, wait, here it is. Eyewitness News confirms that Jordaan had appointed a new head of safety and security without following procedures.
The provincial cooperative governance department says it was not informed of the pending appointment of Linda Mti, a convicted criminal.
Eastern Cape Cooperative Governance says its protocol for the MEC to approve senior positions at local government level, even though the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro remains the ‘employer’.
Cooperative governance spokesperson Mamkeli Ngam says the MEC was not informed of the appointment of a Mandela Bay head of safety and security.
“There has to be a process of concurrence according to law.” The department will now investigate what legal processes were followed prior to Mti’s appointment.
Meanwhile, the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality says the Democratic Alliance (DA) should stop calling its head of safety and security a “convicted criminal”.
According to the DA’s mayoral candidate Athol Trollip, Mti was found guilty of drunk driving and should not have been selected.
“Linda Mti doesn’t qualify for that position. We expect the African National Congress to do the right thing and say he doesn’t qualify, therefore he shouldn’t be appointed.”
But the Metro’s Kupido Baron says Mti’s drunk driving conviction has been expunged.
“Mti’s previous conviction was in 1992 and, after 10 years, that type of a conviction is cleared.”