This continues one of the most important stories for residents of the Western Cape. This will affect the elections, especially the DA, and possibly land issues in the province too (as MEC Anton Bredell is the best friend of unscrupulous property developers).
The ANC’s Cameron Dugmore is a Western Cape MPL (Member of the Provincial Legislature), and Leader of the Opposition. He’s also a member of the Standing Committee on Premier & Constitutional Matters.
On Saturday, he made this Facebook post, sharing his letter to Premier Alan Winde (DA) wherein he called for the suspension of MEC Local Government Anton Bredell. The latter is also the DA’s Western Cape Chairperson. It’s also clear that Premier Winde, as he did during the COGTA session last week, is protecting Bredell, his DA buddy. That means that Winde is guilty of similar conflict of interest as Bredell, and should also be suspended.
Dugmore mentions the failure of the Office of the Public Protector (OPP), and mentions its Western Cape Manager Sune Griessels, whom I know negatively well. The OPP, like the SAHRC, is a Chapter 9 institution that has been protecting the DA for years. There’s no integrity to be found in those who were supposed to protect but instead abandoned us.
Note that I’m a long critic of Dugmore’s inaction. I’ve reported corruption to him for years. Time will tell if this is pre-election rhetoric or something meaty. However, with COGTA wanting an investigation into my beloved Knysna, and Bredell and the OPP being implicated here, I advertise everything that can help.
Bredell must go! Then Winde too!
CAMERON DUGMORE’S FACEBOOK POST
“Please read my letter to Premier Winde sent on Thursday asking him to suspend MEC Anton Bredell….
Another shocking thing here is the total failure of Public Protector to deal with complaint lodged in Feb this year – the law requires that complaints against MEC’s must be dealt with in 30 days. Failing which reasons must be given.
The PP Western Cape is in breach of the very law which governs the work of the PP. There must be consequences here. Serious ones.
I called PP office in province last week. Was told head of office Adv Sune Griessel working from home. Was provided with her cell number. Sent sms. No response. It’s now Saturday .
I will write to Minister of Justice and NA portfolio committee and request an investigation into the Western Cape office of the Public Protector .
CAMERON DUGMORE’S LETTER TO ALAN WINDE
Mr Alan Winde
Premier of the Western Cape
Private Bag X9043
Per email: Premier.Winde@westerncape.gov.za
RE: PUBLIC PROTECTOR COMPLAINT DATED 19 FEBRUARY 2020 PERTAINING TO ALLEGATIONS AGAINST MEC BREDELL – BREACH OF CODE OF ETHICS GOVERNING CONDUCT OF MEMBERS OF PROVINCIAL EXECUTIVE COUNCILS – AND FURTHER CALL THAT MEC BREDELL BE SUSPENDED BY YOURSELF GIVEN ADDITIONAL ALLEGATIONS
1. I refer to my letter of complaint relating to MEC Bredell’s misconduct, dated 19 February 2020 to the Public Protector (Cape Town office), and your correspondence thereto dated, 4 March 2020, respectively.
2. In your letter of 4 March 2020, you emphasize that it is not clear to you in which capacity I have submitted the complaint to the Public Protector. It is self-evident from the letterhead of my complaint to the Public Protector dated 19 February 2020, which states in no uncertain terms that the said complaint was submitted in my capacity as a member of the Western Cape Provincial Parliament of which I am the Leader of the official opposition. Indeed I am ANC MPL, but despite the opposing assertion that the ANC submitted this complaint, it is clear that the complaint was submitted by myself in my capacity as Leader of the Opposition.
3. As you are no doubt aware, members of the provincial legislature have an inherent responsibility to ensure that Members of the Executive, account for their actions in terms of the code of ethics which prescribes standards and rules aimed at promoting open, democratic and accountable government and with which MEC’S must comply in performing their official responsibilities and are bound only by the National Constitution.
4. Given the above, and notwithstanding the Public Protector’s failure to respond to my complaint, it is common cause that the Public Protectors Act, 1994 read with the Executive Members’ Ethics Act 82 of 1998 (“Ethics Act”) compels the Public Protector to investigate, in accordance with section 3 of the Ethics Act, all allegations of breach of the code of ethics on receipt of a complaint by a member of the provincial legislature of a province, if the complaint is against an MEC of the province. Further to this, you are aware that the Constitution requires the Public Protector to investigate all complaints and allegations of improper conduct by public officials and public office bearers and take remedial action. The Public Protector is presumed to be independent and subject only to the Constitution and the law and therefore must be impartial and exercise its powers and perform its functions without fear, favour or prejudice.
5. MEC Bredell was the MEC for Local Government and served as the provincial chairperson of the DA in the Western Cape at the time of writing the letter and issuing an instruction to the councillors not to proceed with an appointment of a black male candidate in the George Municipality until the DA Federal Executive Committee gives approval and warns that the appointment will cause extensive damage to the “DA brand”. This conduct constitutes a breach of section 2 of the Executive Members Ethics act in terms of the Code – MECs must —
(i) at all times to act in good faith and in the best interest of good governance: and
(ii) to meet all the obligations imposed on them by law; and
(b) Include provisions prohibiting MECS from—
(i) undertaking any other paid work;
(ii) acting in a way that is inconsistent with their office;
(iii) exposing themselves to any situation involving the risk of a conflict between their official responsibilities and their private interests;
(iv) using their position or any information entrusted to them, to enrich themselves or improperly benefit any other person; and
(v) acting in a way that may compromise the credibility or integrity of their office or of the government.
4.1 With reference to your assertions in paragraph 4 of your letter and despite your view that the Public Protector “will refuse to accept this complaint, or investigate it further given that the sole basis of that complaint –i.e. correspondence sent by Mr. Bredell in his capacity as the Provincial Chairperson of the Democratic Alliance, to members of that same political party in George during May 2018 – provides no rational nor lawful basis for assertions of a breach of the executive code of conduct by a member of our executive in so doing.” Considering your aforesaid argument – it is not only unethical but also disturbing that as Premier, you are condoning the unlawful conduct of MEC Bredell – under the auspices that he acted in his capacity as Provincial Chairperson of the DA. It is not clear why the assertion is made that there is no conflict of interest and no breach of the executive code when there is evidence to suggest that one month before MEC Bredell’s letter – on 4 April 2018 – Graham Paulse, head of the Department of Local Government, wrote to the George municipal manager stating in line with the Employment Equity Act, the municipality has a statutory duty to implement affirmative action measures for people from designated groups. The conduct of MEC Bredell constitutes a conflict of interest in that he acted in a way that is inconsistent with his office and exposed himself to a situation involving the risk of a conflict between his official responsibilities as MEC for Local Government in the province and his party-political interest. It is irrefutable that provisions of a political party’s constitution can be declared invalid if it fails to comply with the provisions of the Bill of Rights (including s 19(1)) and conflicts with National legislation such as Labour laws and in particular, the Employment Equity Act which MEC Bredell in his capacity as Chairperson of the DA attempted to undermine.
6. To the extent that MEC Bredell deliberately compromised his constitutional and statutory duties in favour of his political party affiliation – as Chairperson of the DA of the Western Cape – this would be a gross dereliction of his duty and failure to uphold the constitution and the rule of law. No person or political party is above the law .The Constitution is the supreme law of the Republic; law or conduct inconsistent with is invalid, and the obligations imposed by it must be fulfilled. The Bill of Rights applies to all law, and binds the legislature, the executive, the judiciary and all organs of state, including a juristic person such as political parties.
6.1 It is my belief that MEC Bredell’s conduct constitutes a breach of the following sections of the Constitution including but not limited to the following:
i. Section 1 and 2– founding provisions – the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law;
ii. Section 7 and 8 – the Bill of Rights applies to all law, and binds the legislature, the executive, the judiciary and all organs of state. It also binds juristic persons such as political parties;
iii. Section 19 – Political rights – to participate in the activities of political parties;
iv. Section 133 – Accountability and responsibilities – (2) Members of the Executive Council of a province are accountable collectively and individually to the legislature for the exercise of their powers and the performance of their functions;
v. Section 135 – Oath or affirmation – Before members of the Executive Council begin to perform their functions, they must swear or affirm faithfulness to the Republic and obedience to the Constitution;
vi. Section 136 – Conduct of members of Executive Councils – (1) Members of the Executive Council of a province must act in accordance with a code of ethics i.e. Executive Members Ethics Act (the Code of Ethics) as alluded to in 4 above.
7. I am obligated to lodge another complaint with the National Public Protector for immediate investigation into the breach of the code of Ethics and other maladministration complaints against MEC Bredell that have recently been reported:
i. Oudtshoorn Municipality – secret recording of MEC Bredell abusing his power as MEC for Local government by colluding with councillors to place Oudtshoorn Municipality under s139 Administration. MEC Bredell in fact assures the DA councillors that they will still receive their salaries as Mayco members so that they can do the work of the building the DA brand! This is a total abuse of his position as MEC for Local government. This conduct amounts to an intended cynical abuse of ratepayer’s money. It has created uncertainty within the municipality. (Attached find transcript of the recording);
ii. George Municipality – MEC Bredell’s decision to launch a section 106 investigation at George Municipality ultra vires his powers; and destabilising George Municipality following MEC Bredell’s political interference;
iii. George Municipality – HAWKS criminal investigation (attached find copy of the Dossier of evidence which points to collusion with HAWKS in the Southern Cape)
8. As these constitute serious allegations, I request that you suspend MEC Bredell with immediate effect until the investigation is finalised.
9. The fact that you refused to suspend MEC Bredell in February this year has actually given him your protection and his unlawful and possibly criminal behaviour has simply continued. This is an indictment on your own leadership and brings the provincial government into disrepute.
10. I request a response to my request within 7 days of the date of this letter. I reserve all my rights in this regard.
Cameron Dugmore MPL”
This is #Day 9 of my 100 Days of Activism against Corruption.