DA in legal move to block City of Tshwane’s dissolution
Johannesburg - DA leaders were on Friday set to file papers in the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, to interdict the dissolution of the Tshwane council by the provincial government.
The DA entourage was to include leader in the provincial legislature, Solly Msimanga, Gauteng North regional chairperson Abel Tau, and Tshwane mayoral candidate Randall Williams.
On Thursday, the DA accused the ANC-dominated National Council of Provinces (NCOP) of rushing the dissolution of Tshwane after receiving a notice of intervention there only this week. The party said this was despite there being other notices received weeks (ago) from two other provinces.
While denying matters were being rushed, the ANC made it known that it was rushing to meet constitutional deadlines in Tshwane.
This happened when the eight out of nine provinces yesterday voted in favour of a motion by chief whip Seiso Joel Mohai that the NCOP consider the Gauteng government's notice to dissolve the metro at its meeting to be held in the city next week.
In his motion, Mohai said the NCOP should resolve to sit in a plenary in Gauteng on March 19 and consider the report of its select committee on co-operative governance and traditional affairs on the notice of dissolution issued.
DA MP Cathlene Labuschagne, Western Cape delegation leader, lashed out at the sudden rush to have the NCOP certify the Gauteng provincial government's notice of intervention in Tshwane.
“It is nothing short of political exploitation of legislative processes to take control of the metro. The provincial intervention was only just referred to the NCOP this week,” Labuschagne said. “It is irregular for this House to prioritise the notice of intervention in Tshwane over other interventions that have already been referred to the NCOP and by extension the select committee on Cogta for deliberation."
She also said there were interventions still to be considered from the Free State and Limpopo that were referred several weeks ago.
ANC MP Archibold Jomo Nyambi, a leader of the Mpumalanga delegation, said the committee had been meticulous in dealing with intervention in various provinces. “This is distortion that what is happening is an exception or we are rushing something. There is nothing being rushed,” Nyambi said.
He said the committee would have ample opportunity to interact with stakeholders in Tshwane next week.
The push for NCOP to approve the Tshwane intervention comes after the decision by Gauteng Premier David Makhura to dissolve the metro’s council after failed attempts by the ANC and the EFF to oust the DA from power since last year.
He announced the dissolution before it was approved by the NCOP and Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.
In anticipation of the approval, Makhuza and his executive council this week criss-crossed Tshwane trying to explain the decision to residents and its implications. Since the 2016 local government elections, Tshwane has been under the DA-led coalition which was formed with the assistance of the EFF.