19 September 2018


Mahumapelo resigns as Bokone Bophirima Premier  

by: Obakeng Maje    date: 25 May 2018

Outgoing Bokone Bophirima Premier, Supra Mahumapelo, has urged those who would lead the provincial government after him to continue with several investigations that his administration had started, with the aim of fighting crime, greed and corruption. 
Mahumapelo announced his resignation as Premier in a televised press conference held at the African National headquarters, Luthuli House, on Wednesday. 
He has been accused of maladministration, corruption and fraud in the past few months by his detractors, though none had presented evidence to support the allegations. These allegations were used to fan the flames behind a #SupraMustFall campaign, which eventually saw sporadic, but violent and destructive protests taking place in different areas of the province. 
In his departing speech, he said there are 29 forensic investigations looking into suspicious transactions - 22 of which are already completed. 
“I appeal to the leadership that these matter must be attended to because partly this is one of reasons that there is a bit of quagmire in the province,” he said. 
Mahumapelo said stepping down was the best decision in the interest of the province. 
“If I continue to stay in the office and I’m also accused, and at the same time we’re dealing with all these 35 forensic investigations and other additional ones which are going to come, it will be very difficult to avoid the accusation that you are using the office in order for you to get at your political opponents or to defend yourself. So I then came to the decision that I think it will be better for one to go on early retirement,” he told journalists at the press conference. 
“One has arrived at a very conscious decision to say one must go on early retirement so that those two processes can go on without a hindrance,” Mahumapelo said. 
He is, however, staying on as ANC Provincial Chairperson of Bokone Bophirima. 
Mahumapelo also listed the achievements of his Fifth Administration that started leading the province in mid-2014. 
“Notwithstanding the challenges that we are facing as a province, the challenges of over-accumulation of underdevelopment and so on, we can indicate today that as a province we are now at 89% as far as the provision of clean drinking water is concerned. And we hope that going forward all of us in the province will work together to complete the remaining percentage because our people are entitled to the right of accessing and enjoying clean drinking water. As far as the provision of electricity is concerned universally, we are now standing at 92%. We also embarked on a programme to ensure that we eradicate the bucket system. And we are happy to indicate that we have 100% fully eradicated the bucket system in the province in line with the resolution of the African National Congress, which says where there is a formal settlement, we should have eradicated the bucket system. Our economy currently in the province is growing at just above 2.3%,” he said. 
He also urged the next leadership of the province to continue with the fight against crime, greed and corruption that his administration had started. The incomplete government provided houses that government had paid contractors for, incomplete and poorly built roads, the shares that the provincial government held in Sun City Resort that has since just disappeared and the monies that vanished from the D-Account, in which mining companies deposit royalties for the communities whose land is being mined, are among the many that he mentioned should be followed up. 
“People must be getting their houses. The second thing will be the incomplete roads projects and extremely shocking shoddy work that has been done around some of the roads. The third thing will be where are the shares of the government in as far as the ownership of Sun City is concerned. Because we have received numerous enquiries to say we have inherited from the apartheid government through the manifestation of the Bophuthatswana government that particular infrastructure and that ownership of shares. So, the question is where are those shares? Where is the transaction? We tried to look for the deposit into the exchange account of government, but we did not find any money coming in there.
“As one embarks on early retirement from the position of the Premier, it is my hope that all these issues that were raised in the SOPA and centred around greed, crime and corruption will be attended to,” he said.