Opposition disrupts meeting

2018-02-01 06:01

A council meeting held in the Jeffreys Bay Council Chamber on January 25 was disrupted by the ANC, leading to scuffles and the subsequent adjournment of the meeting.

Several important items were on the agenda, including the recommendation that Council implement a desalination programme in Kouga.

Day Zero for Hankey and Patensie is predicted to occur in March, while the rest of Kouga’s taps could run dry by September. It is thus disconcerting to see politicians disrupt a Council meeting where desalination was an item on the agenda.

The Annual Financial Statements and the Annual Report of the Municipality, as well as the Auditor General’s report, were all important items on the agenda that the ANC refused to debate.

The leader of the ANC, Councillor Malibongwe Dayimani, made it clear that the ANC would not allow the Council meeting to continue as they were objecting about the agenda, which was a paperless agenda and according to him, not all Councillors had access to their agendas.

The Speaker of Council, Councillor Hendricks, agreed that there had been teething problems with the paperless agenda, but according to the rules of Council, this could not invalidate the meeting.

Several of the ANC Councillors then became unruly and started speaking out of turn, which led the Speaker to adjourn the meeting for 10 minutes.

Upon the resumption of the meeting, the opposing party once again became unruly and started to verbally and physically target some of the DA Councillors. An attempt was even made to grab the cell phone of a DA Councillor who was taking pictures of the mayhem that was unfolding in the Council Chamber.

This prompted the Speaker of Council to once again adjourn the meeting and shift the meeting to another venue in St Francis Bay, which he is entitled to do, according to the rules of Council.

When the meeting eventually continued in St Francis Bay, the unqualified audit report, as well as the other statutory reports, were adopted by the majority of Council, which excluded the ANC.

Council also approved the appointment of a consultant to lead the Municipality through the process of bringing desalinated water onstream to augment the dwindling supply of surface water available to residents of Kouga.

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