DA lands top spots in Tshwane council

Pretoria - Democratic Alliance councillors claimed all three top spots in the Tshwane City Council at its first sitting on Friday.

Solly Msimanga was elected mayor, Rachel Mathebe speaker and Christo van den Heever chief whip.

All three were elected unopposed. During the process, ANC councillors regularly stood up to belt out struggle songs.

Opposition party councillors interrupted Msimanga's inaugural speech several times. Mathebe repeatedly called them to order, but said she would not kick anybody out, so they could hear what Msimanga had to say.

"I want the people to see what kind of individuals you are," she added.

Msimanga said he was not naive about the challenges that lay ahead. There was a housing backlog and many young people had lost their jobs in the last five years.

Politicians no longer VIPs

"We will speed up the formalising of services in the townships. Those who have been waiting for title deeds, they are on the way. We are not going to wait for election year before giving them out."

He said his administration would end the legacy of apartheid and deliver services to the people.

"No more will you suffer again. No more will we allow you to be skivvies of councillors and a certain political party. We are calling on you, the residents of our city, to join hands with us and help to build this city."

Politicians would no longer be treated as VIPs, that honour would go to the voters.

"When President Jacob Zuma comes in, there won't be blue lights. The VIPs are the people of this city," he said. 

Public servants would be expected to work and would no longer do as they pleased.

"The metro police in our city, get ready, we are going to work. Gone are the days where we just leave offices. Let us ensure service delivery happens," he said.

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