South Africa - Durban - 08 August 2019 - eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede and (Co-Accused) Mondli Mthembu outside the court after the appearance in the Regional Commercial Crimes Court 10 in Durban this Thursday morning accompanied by co-accused Mondli Mthembu and the bodyguards and her loyal supporters. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency(ANA)

Durban - After a heated and long meeting that dragged until late on Monday evening, the ANC in KZN was finally able to fire Zandile Gumede as eThekwini mayor.

According to sources, the party did not use her troubles with the law to get rid of her. Instead, it used a report on the state of eThekwini which showed that the only KZN metro was paralysed due to infighting of the top leadership.

She was kicked out despite a spirited campaign that saw her and her backers lobbying other regions to back her to stave off the inevitable fall after her name was tainted when she was charged with fraud and corruption in May this year.

However, Gumede did not go alone as the party decided to also fire the speaker of the council William Mapena and party chief whip Neli Nyanisa. 

It was not immediately clear whether the current acting mayor Fawzia Peer was fired or not as the party was cleaning the top political and executive structure.

The decision to fire the whole troika instead of Gumede alone was seen as a way of trying to dispel the notion that she was the only target. 

Instead, the leadership wanted it to look as if there was a clean up of the troubled metro and other municipalities under the ANC in KZN.

“There was a debate on whether she was fired because of her court case or the failing metro which is riddled with corruption and failure to spend some grants given to it. 

At the end, the provincial said it was using the state of the metro to get rid of her and the team that came in with her in 2016,” said a source.

Political Bureau