17 June 2020
CITY OF CAPE TOWN USING EXTERNAL LEGAL FIRMS AND LAWYERS TO FIGHT ORDINARY WORKERS.
It is with great dismay that the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) have to report to the public about the unfair conduct of the City of Cape Town (City) by the rampant and continuous use of external legal firms and lawyers to fight ordinary workers.
SAMWU have on numerous occasions requested the City to disclose to the union and the public on the expenditure of ratepayers money used on external lawyers and legal firms to fight ordinary workers in internal disciplinary hearings.
The City have refused to disclose how much of the rate payers money they have spent in a financial year on external lawyers and legal firms because they will know the outcry of the public should this happen.
SAMWU claims that while service delivering in the City of Cape Town is on the collapse, lawyers and legal firms have benefitted greatly from the coffers of the City. You look at Health, Waste collection and drop offs, the service delivery is collapsing and not operating properly. Communities more especially in previously disadvantaged communities, everyday there is an outcry for the City to provide basic services which they fail to do.
The City have continued to abuse the labour of EPWP staff with a measley month to month salary but have failed to employee these workers in a permanent capacity to receive a living wage to feed their families.
SAMWU demands from the City of Cape Town to disclose to the union and the public the amount of money spent on lawyers and legal firms in a financial year 2018/ 2019 and again in 2019/2020.
SAMWU further demands that the list of private external lawyers and legal firms be disclose to the union and the public as well to be transparent and if the City of Cape Town having nothing to hide.
SAMWU claims that the union and the citizens of Cape Town have a right to know how their monies are spent by the municipality and primarily on legal counsel at internal disciplinary hearings and as far as the Labour Court to fight ordinary workers .
SAMWU demands that the City of Cape Town stops the use of external legal firms and lawyers, because they can utilise their own internal staff in the legal services department, which they fail to do.
Millions of rands are wasted by the City of Cape Town on lawyers and legal firms to get ordinary workers dismissed in the workplace and would want to direct the Auditor General to conduct an audit on the claim made by SAMWU.
SAMWU is concerned that the City of Cape Town have contracted a huge number of external legal firms on its books based in Cape Town to neutralise the public should they attempt to litigate against the city. It is not easy for an ordinary citizen to find a legal firm in the city of cape town who are not doing business with the City of Cape Town Municipality.
SAMWU have embarked on a Back to Work campaign launched in 2019, where SAMWU trade union shopstewards and ordinary workers primarily SAMWU members have been dismissed by the City of Cape Town.
For more information Contact:
SAMWU: Cape Metro Regional Secretary
083 265 1516
072 571 1633