'Tshwane, NMB political instability impacts governance, service delivery'

Athol Trollip is out as Nelson Mandela Bay mayor, Tshwane Mayor Solly Msimanga could be next.

FILE: City of Tshwane Mayor Solly Msimanga. Picture: Talk Radio 702.

JOHANNESBURG - As the Democratic Alliance (DA) puts out fires in at least two of its coalition governments, local government experts are warning the instability will impact on governance and service delivery in those metros.

On Monday, Athol Trollip was ousted as mayor and replaced by the United Democratic Movement’s Mongameli Bobani.

But the DA insists it’s still in charge of Nelson Mandela Bay and that the council meeting on Monday night was illegal.

Trollip is out as Nelson Mandela Bay mayor, Tshwane Mayor Solly Msimanga could be next on Thursday, 30 August, when the council decides on a motion of no confidence in him.

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These developments are important politically as the country prepares for 2019’s elections, but the instability is costly as it impacts on governance and service delivery.

President at the Institute of Local Government Management Monde Stratu said: “This affects, directly, service delivery. The men on the streets in affected because projects and budgets are changed.”

He says it’s important that national government intervenes, while the ANC in Gauteng says the solution is early elections a suggestion the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) welcomes but the DA calls a political gimmick.

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EFF leader Julius Malema says Msimanga must take responsibility for the maladministration in the metro by resigning.

In a briefing at the party’s headquarters on Tuesday afternoon, Malema accused Msimanga of being complicit in the appointment of unqualified chief of staff Marieta Aucamp, and the city’s executive director, Stefan de Villiers, who was found to only have a body builder’s certificate.

Msimanga has indicated plans to suspend city manager Moeketsi Mosola for flouting regulations in the awarding a R12 billion contract to engineering consultancy firm GladAfrica.

The EFF will table a motion of no confidence in Msimanga on 31 August.

Malema says Msimanga knew about the awarding of a multi-billion-rand tender to GladAfrica, which makes it complicit.

“We’re not going to allow politicians to run away with murder using administrators. So he must take responsibility.”

He’s questioned Msimangas sudden action against Mosola.

“He knew about it and did nothing. Why now? Because the white caucus saw an opportunity to get back to the CM for having exposed unqualified people.”

Malema has not announced a preferred candidate to replace Msimanga but says his party will support any credible candidate from the ANC or the DA.

At the same time, the DA announced earlier on Tuesday that it will be challenging Trollip’s ouster in court.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)