Minister defends consumer head move

2012-05-14 16:59

Cape Town - Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies has defended his department's decision not to renew the contract of the head of the National Consumer Commission (NCC).

"I didn't know this person from a bar of soap myself," Davies said of the appointment of NCC head Mamodupi Mohlala-Mulaudzi. "There was no formal interview," he said.

"There was some discussion in the department. People felt she had the potential to do the job and we would take her on a trial basis to see how she performed."

Mohlala-Mulaudzi claimed she learned of her contract's termination only when she saw her position advertised in a Sunday newspaper last week.

She is taking the trade and industry department to court after claiming she was effectively dismissed when her position was advertised.

Mohlala-Mulaudzi was appointed NCC head in 2010 following an out-of-court settlement with the department, after her removal as department director general by former communications minister Siphiwe Nyanda.

She claimed she was being victimised for reporting the department's current director general Lionel October to the public protector.

Davies said he had met Mohlala-Mulaudzi on a few occasions and "discussed a few things".

One of his suggestions was better "synergies" between the NCC and the National Regulator of Compulsory Specifications.

"I have been seeking an active and engaged role. She hasn't taken up any of our suggestions. She has had her own priorities and her own focuses and maybe they are a result of requests that come in."

The department has never gone out and said "don't do this, don't do that, don't do the other thing", Davies said.

"There has been no intention on our side that we want a lame duck consumer commission. Absolutely not.

"My intention was not to dismiss anyone but to improve systems in NCC."

Davies dismissed suggestions that the NCC's budget had been deliberately cut.

"We did not at any stage say cut the budget of the NCC, but the NCC didn't get everything it wanted but neither did we get everything we wanted to in industrial policy either."

Mohlala-Mulaudzi had also refused to cooperate with an independent investigation looking into the state of affairs at the NCC, after complaints from the National Education Health and Allied Workers' Union about non-adherence to the terms of a transfer agreement and other concerns raised by staff members.

"The intention of conducting this was to provide Minister Davies with an independent assessment report that can enable him to act decisively and bring the situation back to normal," the department said in a statement released on Monday.

"We regret to mention that Commissioner Mohlala-Mulaudzi refused to cooperate with the investigators on this matter."

  • George - 2012-05-14 17:11

    How awful to advertise someone's job while they are in office! Speaks volumes about the responsible Minister, a cANCer appointee no doubt. Zero leadership and no ethics. Just what we need to drive our infrastructure behemoth forward.

      Slick - 2012-05-14 18:39

      And you know for a FACT that the lady was NOT aware her position was being advertised , George??

  • Lungani - 2012-05-14 17:19

    HAAhaaaa... That is what happens when you appear to know too much. Another court battle and sensationalism. Lets see what happens this time if another Minister has to intervene upon the presidents instruction.

  • david.lebethe - 2012-05-14 17:35

    I have known Mohlala to be a very intellegent and am sure she can hold her own against the Minister. By the way, her appointment as the head of the National Consumer Council wasn't out of choice but sequel to running-ins with Siphiwe Nyanda, who can advise the Minister better about the lady. She has also proven to be very dilligent and has given her office some respectability. In the light thereof, I can only conclude that she is another victim of political interference as the public need to protect her just like Thuli Madonsela the other day.

      Slick - 2012-05-14 18:32

      Protect her?? the NCC is a farcical dysfunctional department and if you want to be Captain of a sinking ship. Then be prepared to go down with the ship that you have driven onto the rocks just over a year after it set sail on its maiden voyage! A lot to late to start blaming the ship builder for the failure. IE: the DTI. If it is and was as bad as she is making out then why did she NOT bring the Ship into dock, until the various repairs were made?? Simple FACT, deal with it!

  • mtlhavanirecksons - 2012-05-14 18:11

    Tjo it neva rains bt pours for Miss Goodie-two-shoes Mohlala, oh shes got a double barrel surname nw? She made a gud commissioner though!

      Slick - 2012-05-14 18:22

      Good Commissioner?? ermmmm...uhmmmm...!

  • Meshack Letswalo - 2012-05-14 18:40

    All contracts for DGs and their deputies have start and end times. When contract ends and you say it is terminated, thats not true. She must apply for the vacant position just like other candidates or look for another job although I doubt she will ever be a DG again.

      Slick - 2012-05-14 20:29

      Shes is not a DG or deputy. She was appointed as Commissioner of the NCC which answers to the DTI. The merits for her getting the position is the first place is also highly dubious to say the least!!

  • owamin1 - 2012-05-15 01:11

    When all your bosses find reason to fire you, and each time it happens you cry foul and run to the media...I am sorry, but I would do serious introspection if I were her. Unfortunately, people tend to right everything off as political interference or a bright spark being side-lined. I challenge her sympathisers - hire her, and let us know how you fare in a year or two. I doubt there’s any employer who would be excited by the conducted of an employee who conducts her business in public. Ngiyamazi mina. I have worked with her.

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