Durban — The African Democratic Change (ADeC) leader, Visvin Reddy, has lashed out at both Abantu Batho Congress (ABC) leader Philani Mavundla and the Active Citizens Coalition’s (ACC’s) Imitiaz Syed as the worst hypocrites for selling out the suffering residents of eThekwini by voting to keep the ANC in power.
Both ABC and ACC, with two councillors each, added to the ANC’s marginal victory in Wednesday’s motion of no confidence against eThekwini mayor Mxolisi Kaunda.
Dismissing those who called him a sellout for walking away before voting, Reddy said he did not run away but was upset and angered by the last-minute about-turn by smaller parties who had initially agreed to support the motion, adding that after realising that the opposition had insufficient numbers he felt he should not waste his time and decided to abandon the meeting.
Reddy said that what angered him most was that Mavundla had called him and told him the motion was a great opportunity to kick out Kaunda and promised him that the two ABC councillors would support the motion, adding even the ACC, with two councillors, would vote to ensure Kaunda’s removal.
Reddy said: “I made it clear that I was going to vote in favour of the motion and I am not ashamed of that, but when I realised that smaller parties, especially ABC and ACC, had changed their minds I got upset and angry. I knew when ACC called for a caucus just before voting there was something fishy.
“Syed has no position in the smaller parties bloc so I wondered how he can call a caucus of small parties. That is why I did not attend because I knew they had sold out. Syed and Mavundla are the worst hypocrites who betrayed voters.”
Reddy said that having unsuccessfully tried to move a similar motion last year, everybody would have thought Syed would use this opportunity to rectify the mistake they made by supporting Kaunda as mayor in 2021. Furthermore, Reddy said, he did not understand the hullabaloo about his walking out as his, the only vote, would have made no difference at all.
Reddy also blamed the main sponsors of the opposition for not bothering to consult them on the motion and assumed that they would just support it. He said what they had done was putting the cart before the horse.
“Before leaving the meeting, I made it quite clear that I was in support of the motion and that Kaunda must go. It seems that some political parties cannot put citizens first,” said Reddy.
Those who blamed Reddy said that since he was aligned with the Umkhonto we Sizwe Party he could have used the opportunity to frustrate the ANC.
Mavundla confirmed that he called Reddy to talk about the motion but denied that he ever promised him anything, saying he was not going to go against his party’s standing agreement with the ANC, which lasts until 2026.
Mavundla’s ousting as deputy mayor in eThekwini was believed to have been engineered by Kaunda. While still in the eThekwini council, Mavundla plotted with small parties to remove Kaunda but failed.
Syed said his party was not going to support apartheid Israel regime parties, adding: “In principle, we have not voted with the moonshot pact in solidarity with the people of Palestine.”
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