WESTERN CAPE NEWS - Western Cape Minister of Local Government Anton Bredell is being accused of using his position to target certain individuals - DA councillors and local government officials - to ensure their downfall.
ANC leader Cameron Dugmore released a statement on Tuesday 21 July, accompanied by several audio clips he claims has been provided by a whistle-blower, as evidence of Bredell's alleged selective action "driven by internal factional battles".
On the very same day Bredell released a statement in response to the allegations made, saying he "notes the latest allegations and rejects them with contempt".
Dugmore names the former George mayor, Melvin Naik, and the current municipal manager, Trevor Botha, as the two "targeted individuals". He questions the fact that the Hawks were not requested to investigate the former George chief financial officer, Keith Jordaan, and the DA councillor Stag Cronjé, for their roles in a so-called unlawful investment of R350-million of municipal funds with Old Mutual.
He furthermore accuses Bredell of racism, favouring DA Councillor Leon van Wyk - the current George mayor - for an earlier advertised post of Director Corporate Services, when there was a "suitably black [sic] qualified candidate for the post".
As the leader of the opposition in the legislature, Dugmore undertook to write to Premier Alan Winde, requesting that Bredell should be investigated and suspended for the duration of the investigation.
Dugmore wants the same treatment for the head of Local Government in the Western Cape, Graham Paulse.
In his statement yesterday, Bredell said, "I categorically deny that I am in control of the Hawks and Public Protector in the province. Those are independent national government- led institutions whom we respect. My record in local government speaks for itself."
Bredell accused the ANC of playing political games and using "innocent officials to further their own political ambitions".
"Notwithstanding that the ANC had to rely on secretly recorded conversations, I welcome the disclosure insofar as the full recording only further reveals I have nothing to hide," said Bredell.
'We bring you the latest Garden Route, Hessequa, Karoo news'