DA: Former Tlokwe mayor won't leave

2013-07-03 18:44
ANC supporters in Tlokwe (Linda de Beer, Beeld)

ANC supporters in Tlokwe (Linda de Beer, Beeld)

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Johannesburg - Former Tlokwe mayor Maphetle Maphetle and his mayoral committee are refusing to vacate their offices after being unseated, the DA said on Wednesday.

"The DA is consulting its legal team on the possibility of an interdict to end the illegal occupation and bring immediate stability to the municipality," the party's North West leader Chris Hattingh said in a statement.

"We intend to end the illegal occupation by the former mayor without delay."

Democratic Alliance councillor Annette Combrink was voted in as the new mayor on Tuesday, the second time since November.

Motion of no confidence

Hattingh said 29 councillors of all parties, including the ANC, unanimously voted to return Combrink to the position of mayor.

In November, ANC factions in the municipality passed a motion of no confidence in Maphetle.

He was replaced by Combrink - the first DA mayor in the province - when she defeated ANC candidate Lucky Tsagae by 20 votes to 19. However, Maphetle was returned as mayor in February, when he won by 31 votes to Combrink's 21.

While the DA was in charge, it asked for a forensic investigation into irregularities at the municipality. The probe found the council irregularly bought Maphetle a R736 000 customised Mercedes-Benz.

Maphetle also allegedly abused the municipality's disaster management fund and poverty relief fund.

The report recommended that formal disciplinary action be taken against him and other officials.

In May, the DA laid criminal charges against Maphetle. In June Public Protector Thuli Madonsela said she would investigate the claims of corruption involving Maphetle.

Disciplinary action

The ANC's national office on Tuesday said it would institute an inquiry into the unseating of Maphetle.

"We shall spare no effort in seeking to determine the motive behind this unacceptable and inexcusable conduct," ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said in a statement.

The move was "clearly designed" to hand the municipality to the opposition "at all cost", he said.
This included undermining democratic process and disregarding the wishes of the people.

"The ANC is deeply angered by its councillors' involved in this matter for their appalling and unacceptable behaviour, which is clearly an act of defiance and a calculated effort to bring shame and embarrassment to the organisation," said Mthembu.

Disciplinary action would be taken against those councillors.
- SAPA
Read more on:    tlokwe leadership battle
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