The KDM’s decision to purchase a building for office space has had the Dolphin Coast community in uproar over the last few weeks. DOCCRA has kept close tabs on the proceedings, as well as attempting to access information from KDM surrounding the purchase.
This is what we know so far, and the actions we have taken:
- KDM has decided it needs to purchase (as opposed to rent) office space for their own needs. In order to do so they have applied for a bond for R15million. To approve this bond the Municipal Finance and Management Act (MFMA) requires KDM to get stakeholder approval and input on the decision.
- KDM did place a notice of this in our local newspaper, the North Coast Courier and committed to make the information on this decision available on both their web site and anyone that required this.
- The information was not made available on the web site and various attempts to get relevant information on any aspect of this decision was not forthcoming. In fact, one can deduce, from the emails in response from the Municipal Managers Office, that the information on this decision is purposely held back.
- Research into this issue has revealed some concerning additional information. That the building is not fit for occupation, and is old and non-compliant; additional office space for KDM is not required; and there seems to be some relationship between the sellers and the buyers and more.
- DOCRRA has declared a dispute on this issue with KDM and has now reported the issue to the Internal Audit Department of KDM as well as the Auditor General.
- DOCRRA has also approached OUTA requesting an investigation from their side. This, as we believe there is much unhealthy history in this case and a mockery is made of the required stakeholder participation requirements of the MFMA in that the mere placement of a notice in the newspaper is seen to constitute stakeholder engagement with no intent to make the information available nor to consider the communities input.
Please contact Deon Viljoen, (Chairman of the Dolphin Coast Residents and Ratepayers Association DOCRRA) for any further information, or to share any relevant information that may assist in the investigation into this matter.
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