ANC councillors who voted for EFF mayors in North West are still hanging onto their jobs
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Johannesburg - ANC councillors who voted and secured senior positions for EFF members in the Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District Council and Mamusa Local Municipality in the North West are still firmly in their jobs despite threats of disciplinary action against them.
The surprise non-action came after the ANC head of elections Fikile Mbalula told the media last month that the North West inter provincial committee (IPC) led by Hlomani Chauke would act against the “ill-disciplined” members who defied the party’s instructions.
Mbalula was initially reacting to ANC members in Mamusa Local Municipality in Schweizer Reneke – the hometown of ANC’s Rivonia trial stalwart Ahmed Kathrada – who voted for EFF’s Olebogeng Mogorosi as Speaker on November 22.
Less than 24 hours after Mbalula made the pledge, ANC members in the neighbouring town of Vryburg’s Dr Ruth Mompati District Municipality defied the ANC again.
At that council meeting, The ANC candidate for municipal speaker was elected comfortably, with 21 out of 30 votes. However, when the time came to elect the mayor, the EFF’s Tebogo Babuile won with 17 out of 27 votes. In total, 30 votes were cast and three were spoilt.
The ANC had wanted its councillors to vote for Gaolatlhe Kgabo as mayor.
This week Chauke vowed that the IPC was going to swiftly act against those who acted against their instructions.
He said three of his councillors at Mamusa had already confessed their part in voting for Mogorosi as Speaker.
At the time, he said: “We assembled the caucus there and three of our councillors came forward and apologised. We now know,” said Chauke.
He said they were doing the same in Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati district municipality where six of their councillors gave their vote to the EFF member to become mayor.
“If no one is coming forward to say that I was involved, then we will exercise the right to recall them. They have signed deployment contracts with the party. This is corruption and this is ill-discipline. If they don’t come forward we will have to recall them. We have six councillors that voted for the opposition and all of them have to take responsibility,” he said.
Despite promises to act, highly placed ANC sources in North West have cast doubt on whether the party would take action against all those who defied it. According to the sources, the outcome of elections at the two municipalities were the result of ongoing factional battles in the province apparently dating back to the era when former premier Supra Mahumapelo was still at the helm of the ANC in the North West.
“So in the North West, the ANC Youth League was still divided along those lines. Some of the ANC councillors voted for Tebogo Babuile as mayor because they did not want Kgabo to be mayor.
“They are of the view that Kgabo was still linked to the faction which supported Supra Mahumapelo. This did not only happen in Vryburg. ANC councillors in Rustenburg also shunned councillors whom they believed belonged to Supra Mahumapelo’s faction,” one of the sources said.
According to the sources, Chauke had since failed to convene an IPC meeting to urgently deal with the “so called ill-discipline’ since Monday this week, but ANC provincial spokesperson Kenny Morolong has denied it.
“The matter of the ANC councillors who voted for EFF candidates is dealt with by the top three of the Inter-provincial committee members. We will make a pronouncement after the conclusion of their investigation,” Morolong said.
He, however, did not confirm nor deny whether the provincial body ever met to discuss the upsurge of ill-discipline within their ranks.