Mayor in loo fi­asco flees an­gry crowd

Weekend Witness - - News - JO­HAN BRITS

KROON­STAD — The be­lea­guered mayor of the now in­fa­mous Viljoen­skroon toi­let scan­dal yes­ter­day ran away from an an­gry crowd of about 1 000 res­i­dents, who staged a fu­neral march to sym­bol­ise the end of the Mo­qhaka coun­cil.

The tear­ful mayor was in­sulted, shouted at and heck­led af­ter she turned her back on the crowd whose mem­bers — dressed like mourn­ers and car­ry­ing two coffins — handed over a long list of griev­ances on ser­vice de­liv­ery.

Af­ter a week of toi­let drama and sharp rep­ri­mands from the ANC, Man­tebu Mok­gosi, the po­lit­i­cal head of the Mo­qhaka mu­nic­i­pal­ity over Kroon­stad, Viljoen­skroon and Steyn­srus, seemed un­able to ex­plain to the cit­i­zens of Kroon­stad why their town is fall­ing apart.

She turned her back on the res­i­dents and, ac­com­pa­nied by ANC coun­cil­lors, dis­ap­peared be­hind the mu­nic­i­pal build­ing’s glass doors. Be­fore flee­ing from her con­stituents, Mok­gosi did tell the me­dia it was in fact the res­i­dent’s own fault that their town looked the way it did. “The peo­ple are not pay­ing their rates. And more than half of the res­i­dents are job­less.”

Some 3 500 res­i­dents have signed a pe­ti­tion against poor ser­vice de­liv­ery; the largest court ac­tion in the town’s his­tory is be­ing planned to ask the High Court to force the mu­nic­i­pal­ity to ren­der ser­vices; and yes­ter­day’s march in­cluded lo­cal res­i­dents of all races, ages and in­come groups. Pro­test­ers crit­i­cised her sharply for lit­er­ally turn­ing her back on them, just as the ANC has done, said Pa­tri­cia Kopane, DA MP, who also protested.

PHOTO: JO­HAN BRITS

Kroon­stad res­i­dents of all races, many dressed in mourn­ing black, marched through the streets of the ‘dead’ town yes­ter­day to high­light un­hap­pi­ness over lack of de­vel­op­ment.

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