Johannesburg - The ANC’s proposed motion of no confidence in Joburg mayor Herman Mashaba has placed the EFF, which was kingmaker after the August 3 elections, on tenterhooks.
On Friday, EFF Joburg chairperson Musa Novela expressed doubt about the motive of the motion, saying the ANC in Joburg had “a tendency of saying something and doing the opposite”.
Novela said he was unsure whether the proposed motion had reached the office of the secretary of council, who would then refer the matter to the programming committee.
“We can’t be sure whether the motion will be tabled. We reserve our comment for now,” Novela said.
Ironically, though, the two motions came after EFF councillors, who were instrumental in voting the DA into power in Joburg and Tshwane, boycotted council meetings at the two metros in Gauteng in apparent protest against the DA’s decision to remove the UDM’s Mongameli Bobani as Nelson Mandela Bay deputy mayor after a no-confidence motion in him.
It also appeared the ANC were hoping for the EFF’s support following negative comments made by EFF leader Julius Malema about the DA after his graduation ceremony on Wednesday.
Malema offered to give his party vote to whoever treated it with respect.
The EFF was at the centre of a tug-of-war between the DA and ANC in the City of Joburg after the former governing party lodged a motion of no confidence against Mashaba.
On Friday, Mashaba confirmed the ANC had filed a motion of no confidence, which was expected to be tabled at a council meeting on September 26 and 27.
ANC Joburg spokesperson Jolidee Matongo said a similar motion was also filed against council Speaker Vasco da Gama.
Mashaba, however, appeared unmoved, saying the move against him was an attempt to block his investigation into alleged corruption and theft amounting to R14.4billion.
“The ANC’s motion of no confidence must be seen for what it is, a desperate effort to climb back on the gravy train that they have been deprived of for 13 months.
“The R14.4bn (theft) and 1400 cases under investigation took place under their leadership, hidden from the public eye.
“In time, the beneficiaries of these projects will be exposed, and this is the true reason for the motion of no confidence.”
Mashaba, who has been in office for 13 months, said the motion should be dismissed as the “antics of a desperate party trying to come to terms with its new role in opposition”.
“The ANC cites so-called financial distress in the city as the primary grounds for the motion. The reality is that despite the institutionalised corruption inherited, we have a financial state that is stable,” he said.
Mashaba said the DA had for the past 13 months been able to ensure that residents were beginning to feel the change his party promised ahead of the local government elections in August last year.
“There is no doubt that there remain enormous challenges in our city, for which change can only be realised over the long term. Recent customer satisfaction surveys and the Ipsos municipal survey have confirmed that residents are seeing the change we promised.
“We will fight this motion, as we have all the other efforts that the ANC has made to undermine the change,” he said.
The ANC has questioned Mashaba’s decision to publicly announce the motion before the matter was tabled for a full council sitting.
According to the party, Mashaba’s revelation was a breach of council ethics.
“The media statement on this matter is against the rules of council,” Matongo said.
“Council rules state that documents remain embargoed until they are deliberated on at the council meeting, which is open to the public or immediately, after discussions at the council meeting.”
He added the ANC would ask Da Gama to refer Mashaba to the ethics committee for disciplinary action for contravening the rules of the council.
“We can confirm that motions of no confidence on mayor Mashaba and Speaker Vasco da Gama have been submitted for debate and voting on at the September council meeting.
“The merits of the motions will be tabled at the council meeting. We advise mayor Mashaba to reserve his arguments for the council meeting. We thank mayor Mashaba for accepting the challenge to debate and vote on the motions,” Matongo said.