Council meeting legal – Tlokwe city

2013-09-20 15:26

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A Tlokwe special council meeting was properly convened, the council has said.

“The council meetings that were convened on Monday this week as well as this [Friday] morning were in order and legal,” spokesman William Maphosa said today in a statement.

He was responding to the Democratic Alliance’s claim that a council meeting set for today was called illegally, because it did not have the backing of a quorum of 50% of the councillors plus one.

Maphosa said: “Sections 36 and 37 of the Municipal Structures Act as well as the council’s rules of order empower the speaker of council to call all meetings, both ordinary and special council sessions.”

Earlier, DA North West leader Chris Hattingh said in a statement the party did not attend the special council meeting today.

Maphosa said this decision was “disingenuous”.

“One would have expected the DA, as democrats that they claim to be, to accept democratic processes to take their course without resorting to technicalities and clutching at straws.”

The African National Congress in the North West earlier said that one of the items on the agenda for the meeting was a motion of no-confidence in Tlokwe mayor Annette Combrink, of the DA, but this would not be effected.

“While the motion appears as an agenda item in today’s [Friday] council meeting, the ANC will not be acting on this matter today,” spokesman Kenny Morolong said in a statement.

Fourteen ANC councillors were expelled from the party in July for participating in a motion of no confidence in then Tlokwe mayor Maphetle Maphetle. He was replaced by Combrink.

The ANC’s national disciplinary committee subsequently overturned the expulsions.

“The inevitable removal of the mayor who ascended to the position through the subversion of democracy will only be effected after the conclusion of the outstanding by-elections,” Morolong said.

The ANC retained control of two of three wards in Tlokwe by-elections on Wednesday.

The Electoral Court in Bloemfontein ordered on Tuesday evening that five of the nine by-elections in Tlokwe be postponed.

This was after the court heard an application by five independent candidates who were disqualified from taking part in the by-elections by the Independent Electoral Commission.

A sixth by-election, in ward 13, was earlier postponed after an out-of-court settlement.

North West local government MEC Manketsi Tlhape said on Wednesday the date for the remaining by-elections would be announced once her office received the required documents from the IEC.

Morolong said: “The ANC reaffirms its unwavering resolve to restore democracy and the will of the people of Tlokwe, thus building on the foundation we have already laid to change the lives of our people for the better.”

Maphosa said the DA was only interested in holding onto power in Tlokwe to the detriment of service delivery.

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