Outrage in South Africa as councillors spend 368 million naira to build this stadium

Political leaders in the Enoch Mgijima Municipality (councillors) in South Africa who oversaw the construction and unveiling of the controversial 15 million rands (368 million naira) Lessyton Sports Field in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, are in hot water.

The provincial Cooperative Governance minister, Xolile Nqatha, gave them 48 hours to tell him why they should not be suspended for reportedly wasting taxpayers’ money and bringing the ruling ANC party into disrepute.

He was speaking at the sport field during an oversight visit on Thursday.

This after pictures of the under-resourced sports field, which circulated on social media this week, caused an uproar.

Scores of people questioned its hefty price tag.

The sports field has no working ablution facilities and electricity, while its grass athletic track is marked with fading white paint. It also has removable roofless metal stands for spectators.

Nqatha said the fate of councillors depended on the report he was expecting from the municipality’s speaker, Bongiwe Gladness van Heerden.

“Therefore, the speaker, who is responsible for [the] code and conduct of councillors, must give me a report as to what she is doing to ensure that those councillors are held accountable.

“For that, I am giving her 48 hours to give me the report showing what steps she is taking to hold those councillors responsible for bringing the institution into disrepute.”

Speaking in the presence of the municipality’s leadership, Nqatha said: “I am not a technical expert, but what I have seen and what I have read, there is no value for money here. There’s got to be accountability as to whether due processes were followed in appointing the service provider and what really happened.”

Meanwhile, the ANC’s provincial executive committee (PEC) said if the investigation found any wrongdoing, the provincial government would act and deal decisively with corruption, mismanagement and the waste of public resources to make sure public money was spent on the services needed.

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