DA advertises for new mayor
The Western Cape provincial office of the DA has made a call for applications for the position of mayor in Knysna – despite the fact that current mayor Mark Willemse is yet to resign or give any indication that he will resign from his position.
The call, on 28 August, stipulates that the federal executive (FedEx) has resolved that the mayoral position be advertised and is addressed to the provincial and regional executive committees, constituency heads, chairpersons, executives, as well as DA members.
Applications closed at midnight on 3 September.
According to DA provincial communications manager Odette Cason, the advert is legitimate and follows the disciplinary hearings in which Willemse was found guilty of misconduct and asked to resign or face termination of DA membership.
“These sanctions include that councillor Willemse must accept, as per the outcomes of the federal executive, that a process to select a new mayoral candidate for Knysna will be instituted. Willemse will need to resign as mayor at least two days before the interviews for the mayoral candidate. He must also remove councillor Peter Myers as a member of the mayoral committee,” reads a statement from Cason.
Both Willemse and Peter Myers have until this Friday (7 Sept) to accept the sanctions or appeal against the provincial executive committee’s decision to the Federal Legal Commission (FLC).
Myers indicated last week that should he decide to appeal, one of the courses of action open to him would be to seek to have the entire finding of misconduct overturned by the FLC. Willemse is expected to follow suit.
The actions against the two DA councillors follow a council meeting of 6 June 2018, in which councillor Eleanor BouwSpies was ousted as mayor and Willemse was voted into in her position. Willemse and Myers voted with the ANC to remove Bouw-Spies as mayor – which led to the disciplinary action being taken against them.
When asked if he thought this was in poor taste since he hasn’t resigned yet, Willemse said only that this was part of a process that the DA follows when selecting a mayor. He said that this doesn’t mean he was going to resign, “I’m still taking legal advice on the situation,” said Willemse.