Major setback for errant EFF six
THE SIX expelled EFF councillors are vowing to launch a new bid to stop their party leaders replacing them in the Mogale City Municipality, following their dismissal for voting with the ANC.
The six suffered a major blow yesterday when the high court in Joburg dismissed their application to interdict the EFF from appointing new councillors to replace them.
The urgent bid came after the EFF’s national leadership submitted six new names to Mogale City’s municipal manager and wanted them sworn in as new councillors.
The action prompted the dismissed councillors to approach the high court, but it found that their matter lacked urgency. The court did not hear the merits of their arguments.
T h e Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) and Mogale City did not oppose the application, but the EFF did.
Smanga Mkhumbeni, Nhlanhla Shilubane, Nomonde Nkatu, Lemogang Modisane, Eric Baloyi and Edward Motsisi were fired after their decision at a July 11 council meeting to vote with the ANC in its budget vote.
The EFF was determined to defend their decision to axe the six , who want the party leadership to reconsider the decision to expel them.
Now the aggrieved six have vowed to approach the high court again today to have their application placed back on the roll in the civil court, because the high court has a backlog of cases.
Mkhumbeni, the former EFF chief whip, appeared confident that the court would find a suitable date for them to argue their case in a bid to have their dismissal rescinded.
“Our dismissal was unfair. We filed notices to appeal the (EFF) national command team’s decision to dismiss us on Monday.
“Despite us filing the notices, our leadership approached Mogale City Municipality and furnished them with the names of new councillors to replace us. That was unfair. It was on that basis that we filed an urgent application in the high court,” he said.
Mkhumbeni also claimed the proceedings in their disciplinary hearing had been unfair, saying he was not allowed to present his case or call witnesses to support him.
The decision to charge the EFF six came after the DA lost the mayoral seat to the ANC in June.
The ANC filed a motion of no confidence in former DA mayor Michael Holenstein and received 39 votes in favour of the motion. The DA received 36 votes and there were two spoilt ballots.
In last year’s municipal elections, the DA secured 27 seats, the EFF nine and the IFP two, while the Freedom Front Plus (FF+) got one.
The opposition party had a collective representation of 39 councillors, while the ANC had 38.
During the vote of no confidence, one of the opposition members voted with the ANC, while two spoilt their votes.
Both the EFF and the DA struggled to find the culprits within their ranks.
But things turned out differently when the EFF six voted with the ANC, claiming it was a people’s budget.
Their leaders, however, acted immediately.
Councillors’ urgent bid to rescind their axing fails