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Ombudsman By-law, 2014
- Published in Gauteng Provincial Gazette no. 80 on 28 March 2014
- Commenced on 1 September 2014
- [This is the version of this document from 28 March 2014 and includes any amendments published up to 11 May 2022.]
PreambleThe Municipal Manager of the City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality hereby, in terms of Section 13a of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, 2000 (Act No 32 of 2000) publishes the Establishment of the Office of the Ombudsman By-Laws for the City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality, as approved by its Council, as set out herein under.WHEREAS the City of Johannesburg has adopted the Joburg 2040 GDS, an aspirational strategy that defines the type of society the City aspires to achieve, by 2040;WHEREAS in terms of the Joburg 2040 GDS the City is required to be responsive, accountable, efficient and productive in the way it carries out its duties as developmental local government.WHEREAS the City seeks to ensure that customers and citizens feel acknowledged, through the operationalizaton of a refined, shared and comprehensive customer care approach that puts people first.WHEREAS section 43(c) of the Constitution vest legislative authority in respect of the local sphere of government in municipal councils as set out in section 156;WHEREAS section 156(2) and (5) of the Constitution provides that a municipality may make and administer by-laws for the effective administration of matters which it has the right to administer, and to exercise any power concerning a matter reasonably necessary for, or incidental to, the effective performance of its functions;WHEREAS the City of Johannesburg has identified the need to establish an independent Office of the Ombudsman whose primary function is to be a designated neutral facilitator who provides confidential and impartial assistance in resolving grievances and disputes. The City Ombudsman shall investigate complaints, reports findings, and mediates fair settlements between individuals, group of individuals; and institutions or organisationsAND WHEREAS there is a need for the establishment of a mechanism whereby residents of the City of Johannesburg can formally lodge complaints against alleged acts of maladministration, the following by-law is therefore established.
1. DefinitionsIn this By-law, unless the context otherwise indicates-"Administration" means the administration of the municipality as contemplated in section 51 of the Municipal Systems Act;"City Manager" means the municipal manager appointed in terms of section 57 of the Municipal Systems Act and section 82 of the Municipal Structures Act;"Ombudsman" means a person appointed as the Ombudsman in terms of section 5;"Complainant" means any person who has lodged a complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman as provided for in this by-law;"Constitution" means the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa;"Council" means the Council of the City of Johannesburg municipality as contemplated in section 18 of the Municipal Structures Act;"Councillor" means a member of the Council;"Employee" means any staff member of the City of Johannesburg municipality or any of its municipal owned entities;"Executive Mayor" means the a person elected in terms of section 55 of the Municipal Structures Act;"Mayoral Committee" means the Mayoral Committee established in terms of section 60 of the Municipal Structures Act;"Maladministration" means an act or omission committed by the administration or by an employee of the administration and which has the impact of infringing upon a person or institutions' right to fair administrative action or that results in manifestly inequitable, unfair, irregular or unprocedural treatment;"Municipality" means the City of Johannesburg municipality established in terms of Section 12 of the Municipal Structures Act;"Prescribe" means prescribe by regulation in terms of this by-law;"Speaker" means a person elected in terms of section 36(2) of the Municipal Structures Act;
2. The office of the ombudsman
3. The structureOffice of the Ombudsman shall consist of the Ombudsman and such other persons who may be necessary for the effective exercise of the powers and functions and duties provided for in this by-law.
4. ObjectivesThe objectives of the Office of the Ombudsman are to:(a)ensure that all complaints relating to alleged acts of maladministration where members of the public are alleged to have suffered an injustice as a result of such maladministration by the administration or any of its employees, and where such acts allegedly infringe upon the Constitutional rights of an individual, are investigated and dealt with in a proper manner; and(b)ensure that the complaints relating to the actions of the administration including its employees, where such alleged acts allegedly result in a contravention upon the rights of the public to efficient and courteous service, dignity, honesty and integrity in the public administration of the municipality, are investigated properly and dealt with; and(c)ensure the adherence to the principles of procedural fairness and administrative justice; and(d)assist in preserving and promoting compliance with all resolutions, policies and by-laws which govern the municipality and which detail the direct or indirect services as rendered to members of the public and therefore ensuring that the rights of the public are protected; and(e)provide for the reporting on the possibility of amending the processes or policies of the municipality, including those of the Office; and(f)develop awareness of human rights among the residents of the City of Johannesburg;(g)make recommendations to the City Manager in order to enhance the promotion and implementation of human rights; and(h)undertake studies and report to the Executive Mayor and the City Manager on matters relating to human rights; and investigate complaints of violations of human rights by the administration of the municipality and to seek appropriate redress.
5. Appointment of the ombudsman of the city of johannesburg
6. Functions and powers of the ombudsmanThe Ombudsman may, at his or her own instance, and must, on receipt of a complaint in terms of section 8, investigate any alleged act or omission or any attempt by an employee serving in the municipality or municipal entity which constitutes-(a)any contravention of item 2, 4(1)(a) or (b); 5, 6(1), 7, 8,9 or 12 of the Code of Conduct for Municipal Staff Members contained in Schedule 2 to the Municipal Systems Act;(b)any failure to comply with the provisions of section 5(1)(b), (c), (f) or (g) of the Municipal Systems Act;(c)any maladministration in the affairs of the municipality to the prejudice of a member of the public;(d)any abuse or unjustifiable exercise of power, whether such power is held under a delegation or in terms of any law;(e)any unfair, capricious or discourteous conduct;(f)any improper conduct in the affairs of the municipality which directly or indirectly prejudices a member of the public;(g)any other act or omission by an employee performing a public function which results in the unlawful or improper prejudice to a member of the public.
7. Matters not for investigation
8. Submission of complaints
9. Terms of reference
10. Resolution/settlement of complaints
11. Complaints finalisation procedure
12. Complaints for referral
13. Organisational or internal investigations
14. General principles applicable to investigations
16. Public participation and public awareness
17. GeneralThe Ombudsman and staff employed in the Office of the Ombudsman shall-(a)perform their functions diligently, in good faith and without fear or favour;(b)not use their position for private gain or to improperly benefit another person;(c)not undertake any paid work outside of the Office of the Ombudsman except with the consent of the City Manager;(d)not act in any way that compromises the credibility or integrity of the office of the Ombudsman.
18. Cooperative actionThe Office of the Ombudsman shall operate cooperatively with -(a)the City Manager;(b)the Executive Mayor (c) the Office of the Public Protector;(d)The South African Human Rights Commission;(e)the Commission on Gender Equality;(f)the Auditor-General;(g)Consumer Protection Commission;(h)any such structures or agencies as may be legislatively prescribed or necessary.
20. Application to municpal entitiesThe provisions of this by-law shall apply to employees of any municipal entity established by Council in terms of section 82 of the Municipal Systems Act.
21. AccountabilityThe Office of the Ombudsman and the Ombudsman are accountable to Council in accordance with the provisions of this by-law.
22. Offence and penaltiesAny person who fails to comply with any lawful instruction issued by the Office of the Ombudsman in terms of provisions of this by-law shall be guilty of an offence and on conviction be liable to a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 12 months or to both such fine or imprisonment and/or face disciplinary proceedings.
23. Short title and date of commencementThis by-law shall be called the City of Johannesburg: Ombudsman By-Law and takes effect on 01 September 2014.
History of this By-law
1 September 2014By-law commences.
28 March 2014 this versionPublished in Gauteng Provincial Gazette no. 80