Coun­cil at peace on well­ness day

Pretoria News Weekend - - NEWS - GOITSEMANG TLHABYE

WHAT hap­pens in coun­cil stays in coun­cil, as City of Tsh­wane coun­cil­lors put their dif­fer­ences aside to cel­e­brate the be­gin­ning of spring at the first an­nual Coun­cil­lors’ Well­ness and sports day.

Gone were the suits and se­ri­ous de­meanours, as coun­cil­lors donned their soc­cer shorts and boots to take each other on for the love of the game at the Lu­cas “Mas­ter­pieces” Moripe sta­dium in At­teridgeville.

Tsh­wane Metro coun­cil chief whip Chris­ti­aan van den Heever said the day was im­por­tant as they wanted city coun­cil­lors to be healthy and get them away from the coun­cil set­ting.

Un­der the slo­gan: “A healthy city hosts healthy coun­cil­lors”, Van den Heever said they wanted to cre­ate an at­mos­phere in which all coun­cil­lors could get to know each other bet­ter.

He said that fol­low­ing a de­bate in the coun­cil re­gard­ing colo­nial­ism, it was de­cided by all to sign a so­cial co­he­sion pledge to act pro­fes­sion­ally and to the ben­e­fit of the city’s cit­i­zens. The mem­bers had put their dif­fer­ences aside and de­cided to just have fun.

“Pol­i­tics will al­ways be the same. It’s only the faces that change. So, just for to­day, we’ve for­got­ten about it for a while,” he said.

Tsh­wane City Man­ager Moeketsi Mosola said for coun­cil­lors to de­liver ser­vices to the peo­ple it was cru­cial for them to unite as a team, de­spite party af­fil­i­a­tions.

“We’ve only been to­gether for 10 months and this is the first real op­por­tu­nity for all of us to talk. Work­ing for the city, we want our staff to be healthy so they can give their en­ergy to the peo­ple,” he said.

He added that they had also brought med­i­cal ser­vices to take mem­bers’ blood pres­sure, choles­terol and en­cour­age staff mem­bers to test for HIV.

“If any of my staff mem­bers are sick, it means the cit­i­zens we promised to serve will not be get- ting that ser­vice.”

ANC chief whip Aaron Maluleke said that de­spite the walk-out by the party dur­ing the coun­cil meet­ing on Thurs­day, they had the same ob­jec­tives of serv­ing the peo­ple.

He added: “Yes, there is ri­valry be­tween us, but we are not ene- mies. We have stren­u­ous work ahead and we needed the time just to con­nect with each other.”

Tsh­wane City coun­cil­lors play soc­cer dur­ing their fun day as they cel­e­brate spring at Lu­cas ‘Mas­ter­pieces’ Moripe Sta­dium in At­teridgeville.

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