Beaufort West’s former mayor Truman Prince File picture: Michael Walker/Independent Media
Five days after winning back power in the Beaufort West municipality, the DA stands to again lose control of the municipality, paving the way for the return of Truman Prince.

The party’s victory with a court application to set aside a council meeting that saw DA mayor Japie van der Linde and speaker Euna Wentzel removed is set to be short-lived.

This as the ANC and Karoo Democratic Force (KDF), a former DA coalition partner, prepare for a motion of no confidence, scheduled to take place this Friday.

Last week Western Cape High Court Judge Pearl Andrews nullified the February meeting that saw the DA being ousted, stating that insufficient notice in terms of council rules was given before the motion of no confidence was held.

KDF chairperson Noel Constable said they have taken precautions this time to ensure that their latest motion went off without a hitch.

“We have submitted our motion and it has been set down for June 29, and we do have the numbers to make sure that the DA is removed from (power in) the council,” he said.

“The breakdown with the DA was not a decision that was made overnight; we went through a lot of processes trying to find a resolution.

“Firstly, we did not receive the blessing of the people to support the DA.”

Constable said after the removal of the DA, the position of mayor would be filled by the KDF, while the ANC would fill the position of deputy mayor, which was likely to be given to Prince.

In the past 15 years Prince, the scandal-plagued Karoo politician, has been mayor three times as well as municipal manager - which each term mired in controversy.

Prince said with the support of the KDF they would be able to remove the DA from power in the council, ensuring the municipality returned to the ANC, which was toppled in the 2016 local government elections. 

DA regional head, Jaco Londt, said: “Technically we have not lost the municipality as yet, but the ANC and the KDF have the numbers to bring on a motion.

“But we have made significant strides in improving the municipality, that had been run into the ground.

“If a motion is brought we will have to deal with that but if we find ourselves in opposition, we need to make sure we are an effective opposition.

“Ever since the KDF have indicated their intention, our stance has always been that the door is always open to them to see what is better for the people of town. I do note that there are strong feelings within the KDF that they should not go with the ANC.

“But wherever we can get into government, and people share our vision of implementing clean governance, we are willing to go into talks and form a coalition. But if any political party - and this is the case in about seven municipalities in the region - if any of the smaller parties decide they don’t want to be in a coalition with us anymore, we believe that it will affect service delivery. But I think smaller parties that chop and change like this, leads to voters getting frustrated. This is something we need to communicate to voters. It is frustrating, so you work with the hand that’s been dealt to you.”

And the situation in the neighbouring district is not any better - George mayor Melvin Naik faces a motion of no confidence that could be supported by his own party.

Naik, who is facing charges of bringing his party into disrepute over anti-gay comments relating to a performance by the Boston Gay Men’s Choir, has appeared before the party’s federal legal commission over the matter.

This week, the DA’s federal executive council is expected to respond to a request by the DA’s George caucus to bring a motion of no confidence against Naik.

Naik, who has faced allegations of maladministration at the municipality, has also been accused of revolting against his party and attempting to lure party members to join the ANC.

The Hawks raided the municipality’s offices to uncover evidence of wrongdoing.

“The federal executive received a request from the caucus to place a vote of no confidence in the mayor, which will be considered, and if it is approved, the motion will go ahead,” said Londt.

Weekend Argus