The Nelson Mandela Foundation’s CEO Sello Hatang and COO Limpho Monyamane will be returning to work later this week after an investigation looking into complaints against the pair, cleared them of any wrong doing.

The independent investigation has found that there was no objective evidence to support the complaints, which related to alleged flouting of procurement policies and processes, improper use of the organisation’s resources, bullying and intimidation, and abuse of donor relations,” the Nelson Mandela Foundation said on Wednesday, 10 March 2021.

The foundation has however highlighted that the probe indicated that certain matters within needed to be addressed and said its board is committed to ensuring that such does indeed happen.

“Arising from the investigation, however, it is clear that a number of financial and human resource policies and procedures need to be revised, strengthened and restated to ensure consistency and compliance,” it further said.

All this came after the chairperson of the board Prof Njabulo Ndebele received an anonymous email in December 2020, in which Hatang and Monyamane were at the receiving end of a number of allegations, including work culture, procurement, abuse of resources and abuse of donor relations.

The pair took special leave while the investigation was underway. The probe was undertook by the Foundation’s legal panel, Bowman Gilfillan Inc and included interviews with 21 staff members during January and February 2021.

What exactly were they accused of?

The Nelson Mandela Foundation’s CEO Sello Hatang and COO Limpho Monyamane faced a series of allegations, namely:

  • Bullying, intimidation and harassment
  • Using foul language, which allegedly lead to staff experiencing trauma and anxiety
  • Favouritism by the CEO
  • Fear of reprisal
  • Procurement interference by the COO
  • Abuse and improper use of the Nelson Mandela Foundation’s resources
  • Abuse of donor relations for personal gain

The board said some of the issues raised in the complaint relate to inter-personal dynamics and human resource management, which can be raised internally.

“Other complaints related to the improper use of resources such as motor vehicles, credit cards and Uber taxi services. The investigators found there is no objective evidence to support this complaint. However, they flagged the importance of ensuring that the policies on the use of resources are understood by all staff members and adhered to. The Board fully supports this,” the board said.

The Foundation has thanked Hatang and Monyamane for their cooperation and added that it was looking forward to welcoming them back at work.

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Presh JM Reporter

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