Contralesa threatens government with legal action
Johannesburg - The Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa (Contralesa) says its votes will no longer be about loyalty but that it will vote for anyone who respects it and other traditional institutions.
Contralesa is also planning to take the government to court over the neglect of traditional councils and authorities.
Contralesa president Kgoshi Mathupa Mokoena said it was taking the action to check why the government was not servicing Contralesa.
“We want the court to declare whether as traditional leadership in this country, we deserve anything from our government. If ‘amakhosi’ deserve anything from the government, If the government doesn't have any responsibility to take care of this institution, we will see where we go. I can tell you someone will feel the pinch,” said Mokoena.
“Our senior council has met already, papers are ready, they will be sent to the government very soon. We want the government to go and defend the case, by defending they will be telling us traditional leadership you don't deserve anything from the government therefore we are on our own,” he said.
Mokoena indicated that traditional leaders were frustrated because most of them live on hand-outs and there is no budget.
He said all sectors established by the government have a budget, but only their sector has no budget.
“Unfortunately we were promised that there would be an improvement in terms of economy for the traditional leaders but nothing has happened. There is a high rate of unemployment in rural areas yet the government gets votes from them, when it comes to service delivery they are an afterthought.
“We are not going to be used again as Contralesa our votes will no more be loyal, they will be based to anyone who respect us and traditional institutions,” said Mokoena.
He said the leadership in the government seemed to have lost focus because the mandate was clear from as early as the inception of the ANC and they are now looking at their pockets and other things and the poor are getting poorer.
Contralesa said they could not sit back and allow the country to degenerate into a failed state on their watch
“People lost lives so that we could have democracy. As Contralesa we can't sit back and watch when things are being damaged by people who are selfish. It's up to them whether they change their attitude and focus on the mandate to run this country well,” he said.