New NMB Mayor Johnson vows to ensure metro run by ethical leaders, workers

Eugene Johnson took up the reins with the help of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and a number of smaller parties in the metro in a close election.

Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Mayor Eugene Johnson (fourth from left) and her mayoral committee following their appointment on 22 November 2021. Picture: @NMandelaBaymuni/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Newly elected Nelson Mandela Bay Metro Mayor Eugene Johnson has pledged to revive the ailing metro’s economy as part of the new coalition governing the metro.

Johnson has also pledged to rid the Eastern Cape metro of corruption.

Johnson took up the reins with the help of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and a number of smaller parties in the metro in a close election.

READ: ANC'S Eugene Johnson elected mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay Metro

While the election of mayors and speakers in other metros was characterised by chaos and candidates pulling out at the last minute, the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro elected its leadership without much chaos or disruption on Monday.

The election of Johnson as mayor means that the African National Congress (ANC) will enter into a working coalition and arrangement with seven other parties over the next five years.

Johnson said that the coalition she led would ensure that there were ethical leaders in the metro.

"I will ensure that this municipality is run by ethical leaders, managers and workers. I will remove those from office who fail to do what they are paid to do and we will institute determined and resolute implementation of anti-corruption strategies."

Taking up his seat as Speaker, Northern Alliance councillor Gary van Niekerk thanked those who elected him and called for co-operation.

No one abstained from the vote, but the Democratic Alliance (DA)’s Retief Odendaal was absent from the sitting, meaning that he couldn’t vote, all but handing the mayoral chain to an ANC-led coalition.