ANC axes councillors affected by list disputes

2016-09-11 06:03
Nelson Mandela Bay. (Supplied)

Nelson Mandela Bay. (Supplied)

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The ANC in the Nelson Mandela Bay metro has asked four of its newly elected councillors to resign from their positions in the council, with immediate effect.

This is in line with an ANC decision to review the position of councillors who got on to its election lists in controversial circumstances.

Before the elections, which resulted in the ANC losing the metro to the DA, 19 wards were reportedly caught up in disputes over ward-candidate lists.

However, only four are directly facing the chop.

The affected councillors – Zoliswa Dlula, Xola Tyhali, Nomazwi Sonti and Nomsa Booi – are from wards 27, 28, 33 and 44, respectively.

On Thursday, the ANC regional leadership gave the four councillors an ultimatum to submit their written resignation letters by 9am on Friday morning.

ANC provincial secretary, Oscar Mabuyane, confirmed the instruction, saying it was an organisational decision.

Speaking to City Press on Friday, Mabuyane said the move was necessary because the ANC had promised disgruntled ward members, before the elections, that they would rectify the disputed lists.

“We are now fulfilling our promises to our members by allowing the preferred candidates, as per the outcomes of the selection processes, to take their rightful places,” said Mabuyane.

“We took the steps because we said that we would correct all the disputes after the elections. This is where we now are,” he said.

“On Thursday, we started the process to remove [the disputed councillors] through an instruction calling for written resignations. The regional leadership is facilitating this process.”

He said that procedures leading to by-elections were being followed, as guided by the stipulations of the Independent Electoral Commission, and that these elections were scheduled for November 9 this year.

Mabuyane said he didn’t know whether the councillors had obliged with the instruction or not.

City Press spoke to the councillors, who said they were shocked by the call for their resignations.

Dlula said she knew nothing about the pre-election condition.

“I was never told that I had to resign after the elections,” said Dlula.

“I am completely shocked by this instruction. In fact, I am not emotionally ready to talk about it,” she said.

Another councillor, who asked not to be named owing to the sensitivity of the case, said it came as a big surprise when the instruction was made to resign.

“I don’t know how it got to this point, but I know for a fact that my ward was not on the list of disputed wards,” said the councillor.

“I have engaged internal processes to get clarity on how and when the status quo pertaining to my ward got to this point.”

Booi was neither taking calls nor responding to messages.

City Press has been reliably informed by her ward members that she did not intend to resign.

Booi is a returning councillor, but her community says they don’t want her there, as she “was useless” in her previous term.

The fourth councillor also claimed to know nothing about the instruction to resign.

“We were called to the regional offices to sign councillors’ agreements on Thursday,” said the councillor.

“This is news to me and I’m sure I’m not affected by these resignations.”

Notably, two wards (22 and 36), which were most damagingly affected by the ward-list disputes, are not part of those identified for councillor resignations.

Several attempts were made to get more clarity on the selection criteria used to enforce the resignations, without success.

Beza Ntshona, coordinator of the regional task team, did not respond to calls or messages.

Read more on:    anc  |  councillors  |  nelson mandela bay

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