EFF six seek legal opinion on expulsion
The six Economic Freedom Fighters councillors who were fired by the party in the Mogale City municipality over the weekend are considering appealing their expulsion.
This was revealed by the municipality's EFF chief whip Smanga Mkhumbeni‚ who told TimesLIVE that there was no basis for their expulsion.
"We are meeting with our legal team so that we can be able to engage as to what will be our way forward regarding the expulsion itself. We are considering a lot of options but we are still going to check whether the expulsion itself is lawful or unlawful‚" said Mkhumbeni.
Mkhumbeni was "expelled" by the red berets executives on Saturday along with Eric Baloyi‚ Nomonde Nkatu‚ Nhlanhla Shilubane‚ Lebogang Modisane and Eddie Motsisi after they allegedly voted with the ANC in favour of the municipality’s budget on July 11.
The EFF said the six had defied the organisation by voting with the ANC‚ a claim that Mkhumbeni has denied.
"We never voted with the ANC‚ there was no vote in that meeting. We attended the council meeting on July 11 and part of the agenda items that were to be discussed was the budget [for the municipality]. The ANC tabled their budget and upon them doing so‚ we made 20 demands as the EFF‚" Mkhumbeni told TimesLIVE on Monday.
"We said to them if the budget can incorporate these demands‚ then we don't have a problem for this budget to be moved (passed) because those 20 demands are the exact challenges that are faced by our black masses in Mogale City. The mayor of the ANC (Patrick Lipudi) accepted that and said in fact those issues should in fact be attended to and must be incorporated into the budget."
Following this decision‚ the red berets vowed to take disciplinary measures against them‚ which commenced in July at the party's head office in Braamfontein‚ Johannesburg.
Mkhumbeni questioned why were they were charged and fired from the party if they claim to be a movement that represents the poorest of poor.
"We raised issues relating to evictions that are happening in Mogale City on a weekly basis where our black masses are being evicted by white people. So we wanted the budget to talk to the land availability‚ so that we can be able to assist those people who are being evicted in the city. We have a challenge of informal squatter camps that are not formalised‚ without water and electricity‚ so we approved the budget so that we can address that issue‚" he said.
Mkhumbeni claimed that he had spoken to party leader Julius Malema numerous times when the municipality was still led by the Democratic Alliance but he was ignored.
Mogale City‚ located on the West Rand of Gauteng‚ has the smallest gap in the country between the ruling party and the opposition.
In the 2016 local government elections‚ the DA secured 27 seats in Mogale City‚ the EFF nine‚ the Inkatha Freedom Party two and the Freedom Front Plus one.
The opposition together have 39 seats and the ANC has 38. The municipality was being run by a DA-led coalition including the EFF‚ IFP and FFP‚ with the DA’s Michael Holenstein as mayor‚ until he was voted out after the ANC tabled a motion of no confidence against him.