The municipal elections are now less than three weeks away and, as parties continue to campaign for votes, the shocking failure of our municipalities has come into sharp focus. Only some 7% of the country's municipalities are classified as well functioning.
To help News24 readers and viewers separate the wheat from the chaff, editor-in-chief Adriaan Basson will grill candidates in a series of town halls in the run-up to the 1 November municipal elections.
In this week's instalment, Basson moves to the hotly-contested Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB) and will ask candidates: Who will rule this metro?
This week, he's joined by metro Mayor Nqaba Bhanga (DA), ANC regional task team leader Nceba Faku, EFF regional chairperson Khanya Ngqisha, and UDM councillor Luxolo Namette. Namette was recently appointed as Nelson Mandela Bay's deputy mayor.
In the 2016 elections, the DA got the most votes in the metro with 46.71%, compared with the ANC's 40.92%. The DA then formed a coalition with smaller parties to form a council, while the ANC was relegated to the opposition benches.
Basson will press candidates on the failure of coalitions in the metro, and service delivery which has seemingly ground to a halt.
Ultimately he'll ask, is this race too close to call?
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The ANC's regional coordinator in NMB Luyolo Nqakula is no longer able to join the debate and the article was updated after publication to reflect as such.