The ANC says Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba’s resignation is motivated by the “financial crisis he plunged the city into”. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The African National Congress (ANC) says Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba’s resignation is motivated by the “financial crisis he plunged the city into”.

The ANC in Joburg said Mashaba was using the Democratic Alliance's (DA) factional battles as an excuse and that his real reason was that he could no longer run the city.

The ANC, which became an opposition in the city following the 2016 local government elections, was responding to Mashaba’s press conference where he announced that he was resigning as a member of the DA. This means he will no longer serve as a councillor in the City of Joburg and such, cannot serve as mayor.
 
He will continue serving as mayor until November 27 to allow for his successor to be chosen. 

Mashaba said he was unable to continue as a member of the DA because of the differing political views. He said the election of former Western Cape premier Helen Zille as the DA federal chair represented a win for those with differing political views.

He said the DA often failed to support his policies on bringing an end to inequality.

Zille said in an interview with eNCA on Monday that Mashaba’s fear that his position as mayor would be compromised was not valid and that he is welcome to discuss issues with her.

The ANC said Mashaba had plunged the city into a financial crisis and that his resignation is no surprise.

“Mashaba’s resignation has very little to do with the election of Helen Zille as the DA’s Chairperson. His resignation is informed by the dire financial crisis that he has plunged the City of Johannesburg into. Mashaba is running away from the soon to be exposed truth that the City of Johannesburg is broke and may not be able to finance the day-to-day basic costs of providing water and electricity to Johannesburg residents including paying salaries to staff,” the ANC said in a statement on Monday.

Trade union the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu), which has often locked heads with Mashaba’s policies, said it was pleased with his decision to step down.

“Samwu notes and welcomes the resignation of City of Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba. His resignation brings an end to his reign of terror in which workers and unions have been victims. Since Mashaba came into office following the 2016 Local Government elections, he had made it his priority to undermine collective bargaining coupled with his administration’s decision to interfere in the affairs of the union,” the union said.

IOL