Former Johannesburg mayor Dada Morero says they are going ahead with another motion of no-confidence against the Executive Mayor Dr. Mpho Phalatse.
He says the matter will be part of discussions at the council’s Programming Committee meeting on Friday. That meeting will then decide when it will be tabled before a council sitting.
But the current mayor Mpho Phalatse says she is optimistic that the Democratic Alliance (DA) and its coalition partners will be able to defeat the motion.
Phalatse was reinstated as executive mayor after the High Court ruled that her removal last month was unlawful.
Dr Mpho Phalatse returns as Johannesburg Mayor:
It appears the writing could be on the wall for Mpho Phalatse if Thursday’s voting of chairpersons of Section 79 Committees is anything to go by.
All candidates nominated by the African National Congress (ANC) and the minority opposition parties with the support of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) were duly elected.
The ANC, EFF and some minority parties won by 138 votes to the 124 of the DA coalition partners. ANC Johannesburg chair and councillor says they are confident they will be able to pass the motion of no-confidence against Phalatse.
“Well, the coalition on our side is still intact and you could have seen for yourselves inside there. We voted for chairpersons at 138, we had two apologies. We will have 140 next week and we will ensure we go through them. So, we are solid, and our numbers are solid.”
The DA-led coalition in Johannesburg has suffered a blow with the loss of Patriotic Alliance votes. The party has ditched the DA. And Phalatse’s proposal to the DA’s Federal Executive for the party to work with the EFF in Johannesburg has also been rejected.
Phalatse says there are ongoing negotiations between parties at a national level and she remains optimistic that she will retain her position as mayor of Johannesburg.
“I am happy to say our coalition is intact except for the Patriotic Alliance that crossed over a few weeks ago. People were not sure if Action SA were still part of our coalition, they would still work with us. I am happy to announce that Action SA is fully on board now.”
Action SA’s national director of operations and councillor Funzela Ngubeni says his party is still committed to the DA-led coalition.
“We have a new challenge now that we are a minority coalition. They have to rise above petty, political considerations. And really see if they can’t bring the party like the EFF on board. But as we have seen and heard, the FedEx of the DA has not moved. We don’t know this time if they will listen to her.”
DA Gauteng leader, Solly Msimanga, has said that they cannot go into some kind of an alliance because of differing ideologies and the EFF’s advocating for land grabs. Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) councillor, Mlungisi Mabaso, says while his party remains committed to the DA-led coalition – the motion would be difficult to defend with a total of 10 councillors including from the PA, COPE and African Transformation Movement (ATM) having left the coalition.
“It does place us in a predicament. Because IFP advocates for stability and prioritise residents. That is why IFP has been open to engagement with any organisation. Even the ANC we do engage with them because to us as IFP is always about residents, service delivery and stability.”
Margaret Arnolds who speaks for the minority parties in the Johannesburg council says Thursday’s election of the chairpersons of the Section 79 committee is an indication of things to come for Phalatse.
“I think the writing on the wall is all over the place, there is no comeback. I do not know why she is holding on to it. If I was here I would have resigned and said well this is it.”