Tshwane Mayor Solly Msimanga has described the latest scandal over an underqualified executive in his office as an "attack" and an attempt to derail an audit of top City staffers, instituted at his request.
The Citizen reported that Stefan de Villiers, who served as Tshwane's executive head in Msimanga's private office, was appointed without meeting the advertised requirements for the job.
De Villiers has a matric certificate, is a qualified fitness trainer and a bodybuilding champion.
This is the mayor's second employee scandal, after it emerged that his chief of staff Marietha Aucamp was appointed without meeting basic requirements.
Aucamp subsequently resigned.
"This is an attack. People are trying to deflect attention," Msimanga told News24.
He laid the blame on the main opposition party in the city, the ANC, saying it was an attempt by its members to take attention away from the ongoing investigation into people's qualifications.
"These are attacks from the ANC and officials are working with them," Msimanga alleged.
He claimed the skills audit he had ordered had already made "shocking findings" about how people were appointed during the ANC's tenure.
The ANC was booted out following a dismal showing at the polls during the 2016 local government elections.
Defending De Villiers, Msimanga said he had been honest about his qualifications.
"He declared from the get go, unlike Marietha," the Tshwane mayor said.
In a statement from Msimanga's office, the mayor called De Villiers a "political appointment" whose task was to "lend support to government leaders".
"Stefan has been appointed to his position in my private office and plays a vital role in ensuring that I have time available in my schedule to communicate with all of Tshwane's communities," he explained.
In response to the news, the ANC once again called for Msimanga and Member of the Mayoral Committee Cilliers Brink to resign, accusing the two of head-hunting Aucamp to act as chief of staff, then flouting processes to permanently appoint her "in defence of white supremacy".
"It seeks to suggest that if you are white, you don't need qualifications to be appointed in a managerial post. Now they have hired a bodybuilder without any qualification, except a questionable bodybuilders certificate in a position that requires 12 years of experience and post-matric qualification," City councillor and ANC caucus spokesperson Lesego Makhubela said in a statement.
He added that the ANC wanted De Villiers removed and for all the money he had been paid to be recouped. The party claimed both he and Aucamp were strategically placed in Msimanga's office to ensure they controlled the mayor.
"The two were the ones who, in the background, made critical decisions on how the City is run whilst Msimanga served as a mouthpiece of such decisions," claimed Makhubela.