Parties in Nelson Mandela Bay in race against time to finalise coalition deals before next meeting
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Cape Town – Political parties in Nelson Mandela Bay have until this weekend to wrap up coalition deals ahead of the meeting on Monday to elect the new mayor and other officials.
The meeting was postponed on Wednesday by acting municipal manager Anele Qaba.
But DA federal council chairperson Helen Zille hit back at the ANC for stalling the meeting on Wednesday.
“There is not nearly enough outcry about the ANC’s effort to block the democratic process. We have had it today in Nelson Mandela Bay where the ANC claimed the acting municipal manager was no longer entitled to preside over the meeting,” said Zille yesterday.
This comes after MEC for Cooperative Governance in the Eastern Cape Xolile Nqatha warned that Qaba cannot preside over the meeting because his appointment to the position was under a cloud.
He said former mayor and current DA mayoral candidate Nqaba Bhanga had irregularly extended Qaba’s contract to act in the position.
However, in another municipality in the Eastern Cape Horatio Hendricks was elected mayor of Kouga municipality.
The DA has been running the municipality since 2016 and it retained it after the polls.
But the ANC is still holding out on Nelson Mandela Bay where it is neck and neck with the DA.
Both parties have been in discussions with smaller parties to secure the deal to govern the metro.
The battle between the ANC and DA would depend on the support each party receives from smaller parties to reach the required majority.
The metro has had different mayors over the last five years when the ANC lost its majority in 2016 when Athol Trollip became mayor after the DA got into a coalition with other parties.
Two years later Trollip left when the coalition collapsed, leading to late UDM councillor Momgameli Bobani becoming mayor. He was removed in 2019 through a motion of no confidence and was succeeded by Bhanga of the DA.