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DURBAN – FIVE HUNDRED and ninety eThekwini metro police officers were irregularly hired according to a damning forensic report drawn up by Nexus forensic investigators and presented to eThekwini Municipality in November of the last year.
Investigators found that the recruitment processes for 2017/2018, as well as 2018/2019, were “flawed” and recommended disciplinary action against officials responsible for recruitment and training.
The report, seen by the Daily News, found that there was favoritism in the two recruiting periods, where people were appointed although some of them did not undergo physical fitness tests and d ‘interviews. Some were also apparently named although they were not recommended.
The report first found discrepancies where ID numbers were invalid and others duplicated. The report also found that more than 30 applicants were given special preference and were taken to a metro police bus to undergo a fitness test in Pinetown’s Lahee Park, and most of them subsequently been appointed.
He further revealed that a certain group of candidates were taken to take aptitude tests on a Sunday, which was not scheduled, and were subsequently appointed. In this group, the report found that two of the applicants were the sons of police officers and that one of the fathers was present during this unscheduled training. He recommended disciplinary action against the police officer for this behavior.
One of the candidates in this group was a 45-year-old university patroller who was not qualified to be hired as a police officer. The policy stated that only people under the age of 35 could be employed as police officers in the city.
The report found that senior officials responsible for the recruitment process failed to comply with regulations under the Municipal Systems Act, which states that a staff member must at all times faithfully carry out the legal policies of the city council. , exercise the functions of the in good faith, with diligence, honesty and transparency, act in the best interest of the municipality and in such a way as not to compromise the credibility and integrity of the municipality.
The law also requires that staff act impartially and treat all people, including other staff, equally, without favor or prejudice.
“Based on our findings, we recommend that, due to the preferential treatment accorded (to them), the 30 candidates who passed their aptitude test on December 24, 2018 and were subsequently appointed, be submitted another aptitude test with competent and authorized officials. of the Training Academy present.
“The aptitude test was irregular in that the members interfered in the process, thus compromising the process. This further worsens our initial findings and recommendations that the nomination of candidates for 2018/2019 is irregular and an unnecessary and unnecessary expense, ”the report read.
He further ordered the municipality to consider taking disciplinary action against the nine officers who administered the aptitude test for the 30 candidates who were hired, for violating the recruitment policy.
Nexus also investigated allegations that officers abused municipal vehicles for their personal use. He confirmed the allegations and recommended disciplinary action against the officers involved. Some have used vehicles to transport children to school.
The report was also scathing at officers who demanded overtime off-duty. Between July 1, 2017 and June 2019, the report found that the municipality paid R 576,521,051.22 for overtime.
It was found that a senior officer almost doubled his annual salary through irregular overtime.
The report recommended that action be taken against officials in accordance with the Municipal Financial Administration Law and the Code of Conduct under the Municipal Systems Law.
Although the report was completed in November last year, it was not clear what action had been taken against those who were wrong.
EThekwini Municipality spokesman Msawakhe Mayisela said there had been a disciplinary hearing and another hearing was scheduled for November 5-6.
“The city subscribes to clean governance, which is why it is aggressively tackling these problems. We therefore ask for a space to finalize these internal issues and hereby commit to communicating with all our stakeholders, including the media, once we reach a final stage, ”said Mayisela.