Tshwane Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa. Photo: Masi Losi

The Democratic Alliance has described executive mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa’s attack on three of its councillors “as unwarranted and of a personal rather than a public nature”.

The party’s leader in the Tshwane Metro Council, Jan Boshoff, said yesterday council speaker Morakane Mosupye failed to protect the councillors, Adrianna Randall, Janho Engelbrecht and Lex Middelberg.

Ramokgopa criticised the trio during the council’s monthly meeting on Thursday, accusing them of undermining the council.

According to Ramokgopa, disciplinary proceedings will be instituted against Randall, Engelbrecht and Middelberg.

Ramokgopa said one of the councillors had been struck off the roll (as an attorney), adding that he did not know which “university conferred degrees on them”.

Boshoff said Mosupye failed to protect the three councillors in terms of council’s rules and orders, which state among others, that “the speaker may call the attention of a member to unbecoming language and may also direct a member to apologise if the allegation is unbecoming or injures or impairs the dignity or honour of a member”.

“Not naming councillors but leaving no doubt as to whom he was referring to makes no difference.

“The speaker chose not to protect the dignity… and gave the mayor free rein to proceed with his unsubstantiated attack. This was unfortunate,” said he said.

Boshoff said he would prefer not to speculate regarding the possible charges against Randall, Engelbrecht and Middelberg. “The normal council procedures would probably follow should they (council) decide to proceed against the councillors,” he said.

According to Boshoff, the three councillors “acted within the requirements of relevant municipal financial laws and regulations and with the mandate of the leadership of the DA caucus (as it then was) when they went to see the financial institutions”.

“Again, speculation in this regard may influence the outcome of any possible charges brought against the councillors and I would prefer not to comment on the specifics. It’s a pity that the mayor all too often plays to the house instead of taking his leadership role seriously,” he said. Boshoff added that Ramokgopa did not address the substance of the DA’s concerns on the proposed bond issue. “Instead of playing the ball he chose the easy way out and attacked the players.”

Pretoria News Weekend