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DA, EFF call for action against Metsimaholo officials for ‘undermining council’

A council sitting planned for Friday was abandoned when the DA walked out, saying it won’t be part of illegal decisions.

Metsimaholo Local Municipality Mayor Lindiwe Tshongwe. Picture: Facebook/ @metsimaholomunicipality.

JOHANNESBURG – The Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) want action taken against Metsimaholo Local Municipality Mayor Lindiwe Tshongwe and the speaker for appointing and suspending senior managers without following procedures.

A council sitting planned for Friday was abandoned when the DA walked out, saying it won’t be part of illegal decisions. The opposition alleged that the African National Congress (ANC) and South African Communist Party (SACP) led council violated an array of laws, which included local government regulations.

The municipality had to go to by-elections in 2017 when it failed to pass a budget. The ANC and SACP had to cobble a coalition with smaller parties to get into government. And the municipal manager was put on suspension with full pay for a year while another was appointed to act in the position.

DA caucus leader Thabiso Mofokeng said they walked out of the council sitting because they would not be part of more illegal decisions.

“To bring an individual from outside or national to come and act in the powerful position of the accounting officer, that resolution that the speaker wants to enforce has been declared invalid by the Constitutional Court,” Mofokeng said.

The EFF was absent in council because it was attending to other matters, but Fezile Dabi regional chairperson April Motaung said there was no government in the council.

“We have written to the Office Public Protector, to the minister of Cogta, to National Treasury, and we have opened a number of cases with the Hawks – all this to save the situation,” Motaung said.

The speaker of the municipality had not yet responded to calls for comment.

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