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Joburg mayor election: ANC threatens legal action over delay

This comes after council speaker Vasco da Gama postponed the election of Herman Mashaba’s successor to next week Wednesday.

The Johannesburg council chambers. Picture: @GautengANC/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – The African National Congress (ANC) on Thursday threatened legal action to fast track the election of the mayor of Johannesburg and to decide who should be the acting executive mayor until that election.

This after council speaker Vasco da Gama postponed the election of Herman Mashaba’s successor to next week Wednesday.

“I really need to take a decision on this and my decision is that we should postpone this meeting to 4 December 2019,” Da Gama said.

The ANC criticised that decision, saying it was imposed and council didn’t vote on it.

The election of the Joburg mayor was always going to be highly contested. Political parties brought out their top guns to sit in and observe and possibly make sure councillors toed the line.

Three key candidates will battle it out for the position of Johannesburg mayor.

The DA has fielded Funzela Ngobeni, the Economic Freedom Fighters has nominated Musa Novela and the ANC has named Geoff Makhubo.

But, the sitting fell flat after councillors demanded to know the actual number of votes that made up the 50% plus one majority.

ANC spokesperson Dakota Legoete said there was no reason to postpone the council meeting.

“In 2016, a simple majority was used when they [the Democratic Alliance] benefited, and when they are about to lose, they are refusing. And this is just bad for democracy because this is how a civil war starts,” Legoete said.

“It’s irresponsible and reckless, and we are going to be responsible and not do any funny things, we’re going to approach the courts where possible,” he added.

In 2016, 136 votes formed a simple majority and the legal opinion would determine if that number stood the same.

WATCH: Joburg council sitting to elect new mayor

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