Joburg's Phalatse hails council sitting, ANC complains about proceedings

Johannesburg ANC caucus leader Mpho Moerane said that the party had written to Gauteng Cooperative Governance MEC Lebogang Maile to register its unhappiness but to also inform him that the party could turn to other avenues to challenge the sitting.

A sitting of the City of Joburg Council. Picture: City of Joburg.

JOHANNESBURG - Just as City of Johannesburg Mayor Dr Mpho Phalatse hails Thursday’s council sitting as a victory for democracy, the African National Congress (ANC) has written to Gauteng Cooperative Governance MEC Lebogang Maile to complain about proceedings.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) and its coalition partners managed, at the third try, to elect Section 79 Committee Chairs despite the Speaker being accused of presiding over a fraudulent system.

ANC, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and minority parties have taken issue with the Speaker continuing from the last sitting, where they withdrew their own nominations to contest for those positions.

Disruptions marred two previous sittings, with the first one turning violent and parties abandoning the second.

The ANC’s caucus leader Mpho Moerane said that it was wrong of Da Gama to not allow debate in council.

The ANC said that its attempts to engage with Speaker Vasco da Gama about rushing through the sitting was ignored.

Moerane has complained that being refused to debate ahead of the election of committee chairs was unfair and undemocratic

"But we also said to him, we have the right to challenge the process, we are still going to see how we will do it. But it does not end here," Moerane said.

Moerane said that the ANC had written to Maile to register its unhappiness but to also inform him that the party could turn to other avenues to challenge the sitting.

The ANC leader said that it would be difficult for committee chairs imposed on council to work well with councilors.

"You force it, and you don't allow that process of electing them, and you expect that we are going to work with them in the committees, its not going to happen that way it's going to be difficult," Moerane said.

Meanwhile, Joburg Mayor Mpho Phalatse said that she was certain that attempts to challenge Thursday’s outcomes would not be successful.