JOHANNESBURG - Former Limpopo Finance MEC David Masondo has hit back at his successor for "lying" that he contributed to bankrupting the province.
The current finance MEC, Rob Tooley, accused Masondo and EFF leader Julius Malema of being among those who led to the province being placed under administration in 2011.
"Why is Mr Tooley suddenly resuscitating the lie that the Limpopo government was bankrupt? Mr Tooley knows that the Limpopo government was not bankrupt in the financial year 2011/2012," Masondo said in a statement.
"He also knows why he is attempting to link the alleged bankruptcy to me. He conveniently chose to repeat the old lie in order to divert the public from maladministration and corruption allegations in the current Limpopo government. All of these under his watch!
Masondo accused Tooley of adopting the "fascist Joseph Goebbels’ tactic of telling a lie many times with the hope that it will become truthful".
"It is not true that the Limpopo provincial government was bankrupt at the time of its dissolution by the national government in 2011. There was no additional amount paid to rescue the province from bankruptcy. Instead, National Treasury deliberately withheld funds due to the provincial government.
"By the end of the 2011/12 financial year, Limpopo provincial government had underspent by almost R1-billion because of the imposition of the illegal dissolution of the provincial government, thus denying poor people of Limpopo basic services," he said.
Masondo alleged that the allegations of corruption that Tooley was now "conveniently making" happened when Tooley was the accounting officer of the provincial treasury.
"I joined treasury only a few months after he had left. If there is anyone who laid the institutional foundation for the alleged corruption and the so-called bankruptcy then Tooley played a critical role as the then finance head of department, and he continues to do so as Finance MEC".
Masondo said the Limpopo government was disbanded as a tactic to instil fear among ANC members ahead of the 2012 Mangaung conference.
He demanded that Tooley retract his "unfounded" statement.