The City of Johannesburg has a new mayor this week. His name is Geoff Makhubo. He’s a member of the ANC. And he’s corrupt.
We know this because the EFF told us so.
We also know that it’s now the end of days for Johannesburg - because the DA told us so.
In fact, despite this not being election season, we are all back to getting those horrid unwanted DA SMSes that are the political equivalent of cold canvas calls for insurance or cellphone contracts.
“The EFF notes with sadness the outcome of the Johannesburg Council Mayoral Vote which has resulted in the corrupt ANC winning the race,” read the EFF’s press statement.
Far from being a condemnation, it is probably more of an affirmation of how awful the ANC must be, given the EFF’s sterling work looting an entire bank of the deposits of Limpopo stokvels, inter alia, and not doing too badly from highly controversial City of Joburg tenders.
The DA’s unsolicited SMS reads: “Today JHB has gone back into the hands of a corrupt ANC mayor, reversing progress made over the last 3 years. The DA will keep fighting for better services.”
Much like the EFF when you add a bit of a context to it, it’s a little bit less noble - for a start there’s the little matter of three whole DA councillors voting for Makhubo and not their own candidate.
It also airbrushes the uncomfortable truth of the arrant opportunism in the first place that allowed former Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba to get the job only because of the unholy alliance sealed between the DA and EFF.
This time, the EFF voted en bloc for its own candidate so the DA was never going to be able to beat the ANC which had 122 votes all of its own, before amassing the other minority party votes.
As for Mashaba, who was always more Donald Trump than Helen Suzman, he resigned of his own accord following the return of Helen Zille as federal council chair in October.
You wouldn’t think so, reading his tweet.
It said: “The fact that some DA Councillors elected to vote for Makhubo over their own candidate, demonstrates why I had to leave the DA.
“The DA of today is clearly not the DA that I joined - not when they support an allegedly corrupt person.”
What actually happened was that Mashaba resigned in a fit of pique masquerading as principle despite Zille receiving almost 75% black DA votes.
Maimane resigned as party leader in piqued solidarity, the City of Johannesburg now had to elect a new mayor, the EFF no longer wanted to play ball because its greatest ally, the former mayor, was no longer there and with a municipal election around the corner it’s not expedient.
Nobody else did either and the party couldn’t even get all its 103-member caucus to vote in lock step, so the ANC’s candidate got in.
But it’s all our fault?
My f*k, Mareliese, is alles orrait by die huis?
Ritchie is a journalist and a former newspaper editor.
The views expressed herein are not necessarily those of Independent Media