DA relishes, ANC, PA council resignations in Beaufort West

PA ward 6 councillor Nicholaas Abrahams stepped down on Tuesday with immediate effect.

PA ward 6 councillor Nicholaas Abrahams stepped down on Tuesday with immediate effect.

Published Mar 28, 2024


The DA in Beaufort West, in the Central Karoo, is hoping that the resignation of two Patriotic Alliance (PA) councillors and an ANC councillor will be an open door to win back the municipality.

ANC ward 1 councillor Ralph Skuza, PA ward 3 councillor Eben Botha and PA ward 6 councillor Nicholaas Abrahams stepped down on Tuesday with immediate effect.

Botha, the former mayor of the municipality, was accused of assaulting his fiancée about four months into the position but has repeatedly denied the allegations.

In his resignation letter, seen by the “Cape Times,” he claims to have been subjected to extreme scrutiny, threats, rumours and damaging allegations.

He said the allegations emerged publicly through a live video by PA president Gayton Mckenzie based on Whatsapp recordings where he “raised his voice”.

“I deeply regret and apologise for the language used, which can be heard in the recordings, not just to my ex-partner but to every woman in general.

“The recordings however do not include the many hours, days, weeks and years of abuse I had endured from my ex-partner,” said Botha.

He accused the PA of denying him a fair opportunity to appear in front of a disciplinary committee to state his case before he was suspended as the mayor last month on a live social media recording.

“After consultation with members of my ward, and the break in trust with the leadership of the PA, I hereby tender my resignation as councillor of ward 3 of the Beaufort West Municipality,” Botha said.

Abrahams did not respond to questions by deadline on Wednesday.

PA spokesperson Steve Motale said: “We removed Councillor Eben Botha as mayor because he was accused of beating his fiancée. The PA has zero tolerance on gender-based violence.

“The other councillor was charged by the PA, with little chance that he would win his case. He voted with the opposition DA. We celebrate the resignations. The PA will contest the by-elections ... and, in the end, the truth will always come out.”

ANC Western Cape spokesperson Khalid Sayed said they noted the resignation of their councillor but were in the dark regarding the decision.

“We are still as perplexed as the public is.

“We hope that he will soon take us into his confidence as to why this resignation took place.

“However, we wish him all the best and hope his decision does not affect the balance of council, but nonetheless we are concerned,” Sayed said.

Beaufort West DA caucus leader Schaun Meyers said they were committed to contest the by-elections to restore efficient services and empower the Beaufort West community.

“Over the past year, it has become evident that these councillors struggled to cope with the authoritarianism within the ANC and PA coalition of corruption.

“Instead of focusing on delivering essential services to their constituents, they were compelled to address internal leadership deficiencies, which exacerbated the financial strain on the town.

“Repeatedly, the PA and ANC coalitions have shown that they simply do not work.

“Where they govern, corruption and cadre deployment are their first and foremost priorities, causing the complete collapse of municipalities.

“The destruction of towns such as Beaufort West and Knysna are clear examples of how they govern, and serve as a stern warning to voters who will participate in the upcoming national and provincial elections on May 29,” said Meyers.

Beaufort West municipal manager Derick Welgemoed confirmed the resignations.

Cape Times