New NMB Mayor Bobani arrives at offices, but struggles to get in

2018-08-28 12:26
Mongameli Bobani speaks to reporters outside the mayor's offices. (Lynn Williams, Netwerk24)

Mongameli Bobani speaks to reporters outside the mayor's offices. (Lynn Williams, Netwerk24)

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On Tuesday morning, new Nelson Mandela Bay Mayor Mongameli Bobani arrived at the mayor's offices "ready for business", but had some trouble getting in.

"We will be meeting with the officials immediately," he told reporters.

"Right now, we just want to meet with the officials and see what is in there. Then we'll take it from there," he said.

It seemed that he had trouble entering the office.

"Well, well, that office is supposed to be empty right now and is supposed to be ready right now," he said.

Netwerk24 reported that the mayor's office had been locked, with adminstrative staff suggesting the key was with former mayor Athol Trollip, who is in Cape Town.

The Democratic Alliance has since indicated it is going to challenge Trollip's removal in court, and still recognises Trollip as mayor.

LIVE: 'I do believe I am still the mayor' - Athol Trollip

Bobani was elected mayor on Monday evening after a motion of no confidence in the DA's Trollip was passed, with no DA councillor or its coalition partners present, bar Victor Manyati.

Earlier on Monday, Manyati abstained during of vote of no confidence in the speaker, Jonathan Lawack, and was summarily expelled from the DA, sending the council meeting into chaos.

After city manager Johann Mettler obtained a legal opinion, he declared that Manyati, who was by then sitting among ANC councillors and not with his DA colleagues, was not a councillor, having been sent the information by the DA.

READ: 'Athol Trollip still mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay' - Eastern Cape DA

In response to this statement, councillors from the DA and its coalition partners jumped up and danced, and proceeded to leave the chamber.

Trollip removed as mayor

The council would have had to elect a new speaker, after which a motion of no confidence in Trollip would have been heard.

Mettler said the meeting didn't have a quorum and couldn't continue.

Several opposition councillors complained.

The opposition councillors waited until Eastern Cape Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Fikile Xasa sent an official to preside over the meeting.

When the official proceeded with the meeting, after ascertaining that there was a quorum, Buyelwa Mafaya was elected speaker and proceeded with a motion of no confidence in Trollip, brought by the EFF.

Every councillor present supported it.

After Trollip was removed, Bobani was unanimously elected mayor.

On Monday evening, DA Eastern Cape leader Nqaba Bhanga insisted: "Mr Trollip is still executive mayor."

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Read more on:    da  |  udm  |  eff  |  mongameli bobani  |  athol ­trollip  |  port elizabeth  |  local government
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