SAMWU outraged by NCR’s allegations of ghost workers and inflated salaries.

11 November 2022

SAMWU outraged by NCR’s allegations of ghost workers and inflated salaries.

The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (SAMWU) in the Eastern Cape has learnt with great shock and agitation of the allegations made by the National Cabinet Representative (NCR), Dr Monde Tom who was addressing a public meeting in Komani. In the meeting, Dr Tom made unfounded allegations that the Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality has within its payroll, ghost workers and that over 80% of workers in the municipality are paid more than double what they are supposed to be paid.

As SAMWU, we find the comments by Dr Tom to be offensive and their intensions are deliberately to pit municipal workers against community members, in particular the rates payers who were in the audience. To us, Dr Tom deliberately misinformed ratepayers so they can be agitated and develop a negative attitude towards workers who were indirectly labelled by Dr Tom as corrupt and not worthy of the salaries which they receive from the municipality.

The country’s municipalities are heavily underfunded and rely largely on the rates and taxes payable by communities. It is common knowledge that the Enoch Mgijima Local Municipality is one of the country’s poorest municipalities, with a very low revenue collection, coupled with high levels of unemployment. Dr Tom’s comments are undoubtedly a deliberate attempt to collapse the municipality by discouraging ratepayers to continue funding the municipality as they rightfully and legally should.

Of great concern to us is that the allegations of ghost workers in the municipality were never discussed with the municipality. Had Dr Tom and the NCR bothered to consult with the municipality, they would have been furnished with a detailed audit report which poured cold water on these scandalous allegations. To make unfounded allegations like this is to us, tantamount to labelling municipal workers at the institution as corrupt, an allegation which has no merits whatsoever.

In his naiveness, Dr Tom went as far as adding that more than 80% of municipal workers at the institution are paid more than double what is legally permissible or due to them. This for us is yet another attempt to tarnish the reputation and image of municipal workers. To us it is clear that Dr Tom has no knowledge of local government and the salary structure in the sector. He made an example of a municipal worker who he claims should on paper, earn R8000 per month but is rather paid R18000. This allegation is for us, laughable and exposes Dr Tom’s lack of knowledge of the sector as the sectoral minimum wage is not less than R9000.

Despite the character assassination by Dr Tom, as SAMWU, we do not condone any form of corruption or maladministration in municipalities. This given the fact that many municipalities, in particular the Enoch Mgijima Local municipality are faced with financial problems as a result of the underfunding and low revenue collection which has in turn made the municipality to service many of its debts.

We therefore call on Dr Tom to resist the temptation of playing to the gallery and portraying municipal workers are corrupt. We further call on the Provincial Government and National Treasury to work closely with the municipality with the aim of assisting the municipality to reach financial sustainability. We lastly demand an unreserved apology for the lies, misinformation and fake allegations which he has made against municipal workers.

Issued by SAMW Eastern Cape

Yalezo Luzuko
Provincial Secretary
063 932 9870


Lorna Lubedu
Deputy Provincial Secretary
071 900 5014