It’s your fault Hon Speaker!

The Acts regulating the work of Council have also been blatantly ignored.


“The council is in chaos and it’s your fault, Honourable Speaker!” This is the sentiment of all opposition parties in the Govan Mbeki Municipality.
The problem with the current dysfunctionality started with an appalling decision that the Speaker made during the February Council Meeting. The Speaker of Govan Mbeki Council, Cllr Nhlakanipho Zuma (Zuma), ruled that an item that was withdrawn served before the Council and therefore there was a Council decision to withdraw the item.
“To withdraw an item means that it is no longer serving,” said Cllr Thulani Maseko, Whip of the DA in GMM, “it therefore didn’t serve and no resolution could have been taken on the item. Zuma ruled that there was a decision taken. The decision taken, according to Zuma, is to withdraw the motion.”
The Standing Orders of Council dictates that no motion shall serve before the Council if it has the aim of changing a ruling or rescinding it in the preceding three months. Zuma therefore ruled that the Motion of No Confidence submitted by the DA falls within that period, it would therefore not serve at the Council. This decision has dire effects on items referred back to Council for amendment because that would mean that items referred back could not serve at Council again within a 3-month period. The Acts regulating the work of Council have also been blatantly ignored.
The opposition parties decided to boycott council meetings as long as Zuma refuses to table the “Motion of no Confidence.”
The ANC has since resorted to all kinds of methods to persuade the G9 dissidents to join ranks within the ANC once again. The G9 has kicked against it and is persistent in keeping to their decision to boycott the Council Meetings after promises were made to them after last year’s violent strikes in eMbalenhle.
The Speaker called for Special Council Meetings tabling other items and NOT the Motion of No Confidence.
“The Speaker of the ANC led Govan Mbeki Council continues to refuse the Democratic Alliance and other opposition parties a voice in the council to present the Motion of No Confidence that has been submitted by the DA against the Executive Mayor of Govan Mbeki, Thandi Ngxonono, in January,” said Cllr Ciska Jordaan, Caucus leader of the DA in GMM. “The Democratic Alliance has walked out of the Special Council Meeting that took place on Friday, 15 March, after the Speaker had refused to table the motion that the opposition parties have been demanding since January.”
“The manner in which the Council has been functioning, since the beginning of 2019, has been absolutely appalling and in fact disrespectful towards, not only the legislation that guides us, but also the South Africans in the communities that we serve.”
The Speaker has also ignored numerous requests from opposition parties to have a Special Council Meeting to address the Motion of No Confidence. Zuma has used every possible excuse not to have the Special Council Meeting even citing that the words should be a perfect match before it will be discussed. The G9 submitted their own paper in support of the opposition parties.
“The Speaker is not acting faithfully to all the prescripts that had been prescribed in this municipality. In all this time he is just driving his own interest and ensuring that he secures what the Mayoral Committee is trying to do,” said Cllr Thabiso Mofokeng, Whip of the EFF, “Their priority is to continue with all the corruption that are happening here. They want to pass the budget that we have never even seen. That is why we left the Council Meeting. This is all about corruption, they’re trying to protect themselves.”
“Apart from the Motion of No Confidence, which did not serve on 31 of January, we have submitted not one, but 3 request letters from the majority of Council Members to the Speaker in line with the relevant legislation to convene an urgent Council Meeting for consideration of the motion – all of which were denied based on overly abstruse reasoning. Further to this, a second motion has been submitted to the office of the MM on 4 of February, however an ordinary meeting had not been called so that the motion could serve.” Ciska continued, “The Speaker has consistently and repeatedly denied the DA as well as the other opposition parties the right to table this motion to the Council, freeing the Executive Mayor of all responsibility and accountability for the mess that she has made of this municipality.”
“What is perhaps most hypocritical, is the warning that several councillors have received for protesting the previous 2 Special Council Meetings by boycotting them – citing the code of conduct for councillors and threatening to remove them from office should they not attend the following meeting that is intended to approve the adjustment budget. While the Speaker has not given care to any of the legislation related to removing the Executive Mayor and calling meetings as per the request of the majority of council, suddenly legislation would be evoked to threaten to remove councillors. It appears that legislation is only applied when it is convenient to the ANC. This only proves that the ANC would do anything in their power to protect the Mayor and her rotten Mayoral Committee at all cost, even at the cost of their own councillors and the survival of this fallen council.”
“The Democratic Alliance does not intend to rest due to illogical threats and the will of the ANC to wish for the disappearance of the motion for removal of the Executive Mayor. Even the adjustment budget itself will not mean anything in the hands of Thandi Ngxonono and her cronies, who do not place any value in delivering services to the frustrated residents of Holfontein, Lebohang, Kinross, eMbalenhle, Bethal, Emzinoni, Secunda, Trichardt, Siphumelele and all the towns within Govan Mbeki.”
Cllr Sibusiso Hlolweni from Sapromo was removed from the council meeting. “This budget does not talk to the needs of the people on the ground and we do not have a mayor that will ensure that he or she plays an oversight over the budget. We made it categorically clear that we don’t have a mayor,” Sibusiso said.
Cllr Deon de Vries of the Freedom Front Plus stated, “We left the Council Meeting because the Speaker is not following the council rules that were agreed upon and is trying to push through the adjustment budget because of legislative requirements. The budget is based on a loss.”
When all opposition parties left the council, the adjustment budget was passed…


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