'There will be no pandering to the red berets '- DA mayoral candidate for Joburg, Mpho Phalatse

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Former City of Johannesburg Health MMC Mpho Phalatse is the metro's new mayoral candidate. Picture: Lucky Morajane
Former City of Johannesburg Health MMC Mpho Phalatse is the metro's new mayoral candidate. Picture: Lucky Morajane
  • The DA has revealed the name of its mayoral candidate for the City of Johannesburg in the upcoming local government elections.
  • The candidate, former DA MMC Mpho Phalatse, promised quality services and an end to "pandering" to parties such as the EFF.
  • South Africa is heading to the polls on 1 November to elect local government leaders.

The DA's Johannesburg mayoral candidate says the party has learnt vital lessons from its eventful coalition in the City of Johannesburg, and will no longer "compromise" its values and principles by gratifying the EFF.

On Saturday, the party revealed that Mpho Phalatse was its candidate for the City of Johannesburg. She previously served as the party's MMC for health and social development in the metro.

Phalatse said despite making significant achievements in her portfolio, she encountered obstacles from leadership that had no interest in fixing the city.

"Sometimes leadership fight you in your fight for the residents...instead of a leadership dedicated to service delivery, sometimes, it strives to please those who have no interest in fixing the city and are making demands through the back door, compromising our values and principles.

She said:

That will not happen under my watch. There will be no pandering to the red berets (EFF) who do not ascribe to our principles of good governance, the rule of law and constitutionalism.

Under former DA mayor Herman Mashaba, the party entered into a coalition with the EFF after failing to secure a majority in the 2016 local elections.

The EFF vote ensured that the DA became in charge of the City. However, as time went on, DA leaders and local councillors became discontent with the growing EFF influence in the council, accusing Mashaba of bowing to the desires of the EFF.

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Mashaba has since left the DA and has formed his own party, Action SA.

DA leader John Steenhuisen said Phalatse was the right candidate to bring Johannesburg's shine and legacy back. 

Steenhuisen said:

She ticks all the boxes. As a medical doctor, she's undoubtedly smart and accomplished and will run an efficient administration for the people of Joburg. She also has a proven track record through the various roles in the public sector, healthcare industry, and the time she spent as MMC for health and social development in this metro.

"All she and her DA colleagues need is enough of your votes. And by enough, I mean a clear mandate that doesn't put the government at the mercy of those who don't share this vision of a prosperous and caring City."

Referring to the EFF, Steenhuisen said his party relied on the support of another party with which they disagreed on many issues. The EFF behaved as if it was in charge of the City, he added.

"This is a party that did not share any of the DA's core values of non-racialism, respect for the rule of law, capable market economy, capable state and a capable City to be able to create jobs and opportunities for the people, not for politicians.

"We relied on this party and support to remain in government...and they knew it because they then acted as if they were in charge - the tail trying to wag the dog. They started making demands on the DA, demands that were not aligned with DA core values and good governance. And in some instances, the previous DA-led government gave in to some of those demands, and in doing so, we compromised some of our values and principles."

The local government elections is expected to be held on 1 November.


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