Although accused of tender irregularities and racism, Easton has been under much more pressure than that, first as Chief Financial Officer and then in his position as MM the past year and a half.
He was recently the darling of the Democratic Alliance and their clean audit flag waving. That changed when a pro-administration DA faction was booted out by opposing DA members concerned about the handling of the ISDF, the intended, long-term plan for Knysna’s future.
The DA may deny the division but its undeniable. Pro-Easton supporters, politicians responsible for a municipality claimed to be one of the best in South Africa, were booted from the recent elections. Clean-up is afoot and the intended removal of Easton is a big part of that.
Behind closed doors, for 4 hours, investigators presented their findings and answered questions from councillors. For those new to the room, it would have been a difficult period of catch-up.
Easton wasn’t helping himself. He’d failed to turn up, not even for the public session involving the important appointments of Acting Directors for the departments of Finance and Planning & Development. He was declared AWOL (absent without leave) and Bevan Ellman was appointed Acting Municipal Manager for the purposes of the meeting. Oddly, for a long period, Ellman stood with us outside the closed doors.
When councillors left the room, they refused to answer questions about what had happened. Mayor Eleonore Bouw-Spies said that Easton had to be informed first. But news soon began leaking….
Easton was suspended, pending disciplinary proceedings against him. Apparently the vote for such was 13 vs 7 with one abstention. The ANC remained oddly defiant, again supporting Easton although it was said that a very strong case for suspension was made.
Where is Grant Easton?
Knysna’s political rock ‘n roll rollercoaster continues…