Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Johannesburg on Tuesday slammed "a corrupt and idealess" African National Congress (ANC) after the latter accused mayor Herman Mashaba of plunging the city into a financial crisis.
DA regional chairman Khume Ramulifho said the ANC failed while in government and continued to fail as an opposition party in the city.
"It is deeply saddening that the ANC in Johannesburg, without irony, would hold a press conference to purportedly evaluate the performance of the current administration, when the ANC ran the City in an environment of chaos, disorder, poor service delivery and corruption," Ramulifho said in a statement.
"It’s truly ironic that the ANC, the party that presided over endemic corruption, would brazenly evaluate the performance of a new government that is now forced to rectifying their failures. When the new administration came into office, a number of corruption cases were uncovered, which the previous ANC administration had refused to act on. Currently, there are 1920 cases under investigation within the city."
Earlier, ANC regional chairperson and former mayor Parks Tau released a score card for the DA-led coalition council a year after taking over the city.
The ANC said Mashaba scored an ''H'' and him and his team have failed to deliver on promises made to residents.
The city’s coalition council scored "a mere" 20% in overall performance a year later, said Tau.
Revenue has plunged to low levels, with the city facing a downgrade after enjoying continued good credit ratings during the previous administration. The financial situation was so dire that the city went and "raided" the Debt Redemption Fund in order to pay its costs.
"The DA-led coalition has reduced a progressive African city into an institution that has failed to meet its new investor targets in the past 12 months. The ongoing financial crisis of the city has also seen government of the day borrow up to R4 billion for operations in the first month of the current financial year," said Tau.
However, Ramulifho said the city's finances were sound and had improved compared to the previous financial year under the ANC administration.
"With respect to the City’s current financial performance, for the year 2016/17, the unaudited numbers show a significant reduction in the variance between the budgeted and the actual revenue collected compared to 2015/16. This is an improvement from a R3.4 billion negative variance in the 2015/16 financial year to an improved R2.7 billion negative variance for the 2016/17 financial year. In March and June 2017, the revenue that was collected exceeded R3 billion," he said.
"Never before has the City of Johannesburg collected revenue exceeding R3 billion in a period of two months. This improved revenue collection means improved service delivery.
"The City also assesses its revenue collection performance through financial ratios. Our forecasted debt to revenue ratio is 40.7 percent, well within the City’s target. Our main liquidity ratio measure, cost coverage ratio, is also projected to be a healthy 36 days, well above the national Treasury benchmark," Ramulifho said.
"Ultimately, measurement of the City’s performance with respect to service delivery should be left to the residents themselves and not a political party or its leader, who seem to be struggling with maintaining their relevance."
The ANC was unseated in Johannesburg after last year’s local government elections when the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) chose to give their vote to the DA, instead of the ANC.