By-e­lecti­ons in Molosi’s for­mer ward soon

Knysna-Plett Herald - - News | Nuus - S­te­fan Goo­sen and N­wa­bi­sa Pon­do­yi

The In­de­pen­dent E­lec­to­ral Com­mis­si­on (IEC) of South A­fri­ca re­cent­ly re­le­a­sed a sta­te­ment con­fir­ming that mu­ni­ci­pal by-e­lecti­ons for slain Knys­na coun­cil­lor Vic­tor Molosi’s Ward 8 will ta­ke pla­ce on 24 Oc­to­ber this y­e­ar, which is next week.

Molosi was gun­ned do­wn on 23 Ju­ly this y­e­ar, ne­ar his ho­me in Con­cor­dia, and sub­se­quent­ly his ward – which co­vers Con­cor­dia and Jood­se­kamp in Knys­na

– has been left wit­hout a coun­cil­lor.

Ac­cor­ding to the IEC, re­si­dents of Ward 8, with its 3 876 re­gis­te­red vo­ters, will be a­ble to vo­te at Con­cor­dia High S­chool and Ma­si­fun­de Li­bra­ry.

The IEC re­min­ded vo­ters that they may al­so check and up­da­te their re­gis­tra­ti­on de­tails at their lo­cal IEC of­fi­ce week­days du­ring of­fi­ce hours, ad­ding that it is a cri­mi­nal of­fen­ce to re­gis­ter and vo­te in a ward w­he­re they don’t or­di­na­ri­ly re­si­de.

Meet the can­di­da­tes

T­han­do Ma­ti­ka (ANC), who wor­ked al­ongs­i­de Molosi, says t­he­re are big shoes to fill and that he is re­a­dy to pick up the spear and con­ti­nue with the fig­ht and ser­ve the pe­op­le.

Ma­ti­ka (29) star­ted his po­li­ti­cal jour­ney at the ten­der age of 14 w­hen he joi­ned the Youth Le­a­gue in high s­chool (Per­cy M­da­la). He joi­ned the ANC w­hen he was 18. “Po­li­ti­cs within the ANC or ot­her par­ties are a hu­ge dis­tracti­on, so much so that so­me le­a­ders lo­se fo­cus of w­hat their go­al is – put­ting the pe­op­le first and ser­ving them, w­het­her they are in the or­ga­ni­sa­ti­on or not,” says Ma­ti­ka, ad­ding that af­ter being Molosi’s rig­ht-hand man he knows w­hat is ex­pected of him and he is re­a­dy to ta­ke o­ver w­he­re Molosi left off. Ap­hum­le Ko­la­ni­si (EFF) joi­ned the or­ga­ni­sa­ti­on in 2014 and be­ca­me an acti­ve mem­ber as of last y­e­ar.

Ko­la­ni­si (23) says t­he­re is so much that still needs to be do­ne in the ward and he is look­ing for­ward to be a ves­sel of chan­ge for the pe­op­le. On top of the list is main­tai­ning hou­ses for the el­der­ly for free and that he will a­vail him­self 24 hours a day.

“I don’t see how po­li­ti­cs can e­ver in­flu­en­ce my de­ci­si­on ma­king, but I do know that if I win on be­half of the EFF then I can ha­ve in­flu­en­ce in the de­ci­si­on ma­king

– my i­de­as and that of the par­ty will car­ry weig­ht,” he says. S­har­ron Hart­nick (DA) has been a DA mem­ber sin­ce 2011. The 52-y­e­ar-old Hart­nick says she has been a Ward 8 re­si­dent for most of her li­fe. “I was born in Knys­na and li­ved in Con­cor­dia from the age of 13,” she says. Hart­nick’s fo­cus a­re­as, she says, would in­clu­de hou­sing, pro­mo­ting the es­ta­blishment of fa­ci­li­ties for the youth of the a­rea, and as­sis­ting the el­der­ly.

“For ex­am­ple, we don’t e­ven ha­ve a park for child­ren to play in, so w­hat are they sup­po­sed to do? I plan on ad­dres­sing all is­su­es the com­mu­ni­ty brings to me,” she says, ad­ding that she would main­tain an o­pen-door po­li­cy if e­lected. Would she al­low par­ty po­li­ti­cs to in­flu­en­ce her de­ci­si­on­ma­king in coun­cil? Hart­nick plain­ly says she will not al­low that to hap­pen.

The Knys­na U­ni­ty Con­gress’ (KUC)

Wel­co­me Sa­la­ze says the par­ty will not be ta­king part in the by-e­lecti­on but will rat­her sup­port the ANC’s can­di­da­te as Molosi was a gre­at le­gend.

* Ac­cor­ding to the IEC’s web­si­te, spe­ci­al vo­ting will ta­ke pla­ce at vo­ting sta­ti­ons as well as through ho­me vi­sits on 23 Oc­to­ber be­t­ween 08:00 and 17:00.

Ap­hum­le Ko­la­ni­si (EFF)

T­han­do Ma­ti­ka (ANC)

S­har­ron Hart­nick (DA)

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