Staff Reporter –
The Executive Mayor for Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality (MMM), Olly Mlamleli, is demanding answers of what caused the crash of the city’s server almost a month ago.
The server has since been restored but Mlamleli intends to find out what could have caused the crash which has seen the council’s internet network paralysed. For over two weeks, ratepayers were forced to resort to manual payment as online transactions could not be processed.
“As part of the mop up process, Executive Mayor, Olly Mlamleli, intends on approaching council to allow her to establish an internal enquiry on what caused the crash. The outcomes of this enquiry will assist us to review our current IT strategy and mitigate on any chances of re-occurrence,” read part of a statement released by MMM General Manager Communications, Qondile Khedama earlier today (Tuesday, 31 July).
According to the statement, although the cause of the server crash was not yet established, indications are that a series of power interruptions could be one of the causes.
The enquiry is expected to also interrogate the capacity of the municipality’s Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sub-directorate and the amount of investment the city is dedicating to its IT infrastructure. This comes on the heels of a recent report by Price Water Cooper (PWC) which cited a lack of investment by municipalities in their IT systems.
“It has been found that municipalities do not budget sufficiently for their IT systems. As part of our financial recovery plan, IT is one of the focal are that has been prioritised,” said Khedama.
He added that council was mindful of the inconvenience the crash of the server caused to the public as well as to the local authority. There were concerns that MMM employees would not be paid their July salaries prompting Mlamleli to call for a media briefing last week where she revealed that the city had contingency measures for such situations.
There were also allegations that the server crash could be a work of sabotage while some believed that it was a result of criminal elements who wanted to plunder the city’s finances while the server was down.
“We once again would like to express our sincere appreciation for the patience and understanding shown by all stakeholders whilst we were busy with the process of restoring our IT services. We are of course mindful of the inconvenience that this has caused from rates collection to general enquiries,” Khedama said.