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Johannesburg speaker Vasco da Gama ordered to meet party whips before mayoral vote

03 December 2019 - 12:20 By Aphiwe Deklerk
Johannesburg is expected to elect a new mayor on Wednesday.
Johannesburg is expected to elect a new mayor on Wednesday.
Image: Joburg Finance via Twitter

Gauteng MEC for co-operative governance, human settlements and urban planning Lebogang Maile has instructed Johannesburg speaker Vasco da Gama to convene a meeting with all parties in preparation for this week’s council meeting.

The city council is due to meet to elect a new mayor on Wednesday, after Herman Mashaba resigned.

Maile’s instruction comes after Da Gama postponed a council meeting last week to get legal advice over council rules to elect a new mayor.

“To obviate a reoccurrence of the last council meeting, you are kindly advised that, as the chairperson of the council, you should have an audience with the whips of all parties represented, as well as the rules committee, before the actual council meeting.

“The purpose is to create convergence and achieve consensus on the conduct of the forthcoming council proceedings. In addition, I further advise that the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) be invited to the forthcoming council meeting to observe and provide counsel when necessary,” said Maile.

Last week’s postponement meant Johannesburg has been without political leadership for close to a week.

Mashaba’s resignation meant all the members of his executive also lost their jobs.

Maile wants to see a new executive mayor installed in office to ensure the city can adequately respond to service delivery expectations of Johannesburg residents.

“As the MEC responsible for local government in Gauteng, the current state of affairs is of grave concern to me, and no doubt to the residents of the city. The aforegoing is consistent with the letter I wrote to you on November 29 2019,” said Maile.

He also warned that former members of the mayoral committee were not entitled to any privileges.

“To this effect, should any of the former members of the mayoral committee still enjoy the said privileges and benefits, such as tools of trade, administrative support etc, this should immediately cease, as same will be unlawful,” he said.

Tomorrow’s meeting will see former finance MMC Funzi Ngobeni going against ANC chairperson Geoff Makhubo and the EFF’s Musa Novela.