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Da Gama survives no-confidence vote by skin of his teeth

To succeed, the motion needed to have 136 councillors vote for it out of a total of 270.

Democratic Alliance councillor Vasco da Gama elected as new Johannesburg Council Speaker. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The motion of no confidence against Joburg Council Speaker Vasco da Gama has failed.

Da Gama survived the motion with just one vote. To succeed, the motion needed to have at least 136 councillors' vote for it, out of a total of 270.

African National Congress regional spokesperson Jolidee Matongo said: “Well, they are trampling on the rules of the council. They are highly undemocratic because a democratic process was undertaken where 135 councillors voted in favour of the motion of no confidence. They didn’t have the numbers and only had 99, while the EFF abstained.”

Last week, Gauteng MEC for Human Settlements Lebogang Maile called on Da Gama to give reasons why he shouldn't be suspended or removed.

In a statement, Maile wrote: “A council meeting was duly scheduled for 28 November 2019 to elect a new executive mayor for the city. You, however, adjourned the council meeting and postponed same to 4-5 December 2019. You indicated that the postponement was necessary in order to seek independent legal opinion on what constitute a majority of votes to elect a new executive mayor.”

This came after Da Gama postponed the election of the mayor, as he needed to seek legal advice on determining the meaning of a majority vote.

The mayoral election eventually took place and the ANC's Geoff Makhubo was named the new mayor.

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