Uncertainty over future of Tshwane mayor
It has been an eventful 2019 for politics in Tshwane, from failed no-confidence motions against former mayor Solly Msimanga, to his sudden resignation, which led to the appointment of Stevens Mokgalapa.
But Mokgalapa could possibly never return to office once his special leave ends.
The future of the capital city is now in the hands of Judge Neil Tuchten of the High Court in Pretoria after the Democratic Alliance filed an urgent application to scrap the ousting of Mokgalapa and council’s speaker Katlego Mathebe.
The pair were voted out by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and ANC in no-confidence motions at a special council sitting earlier this month, which the DA have described as a coup.
While the EFF were close allies of the DA after they took over the administration in 2016, their relationship started cracking after Tshwane and Msimanga were embroiled in the GladAfrica tender scandal last year.
The multimillion-rand irregular deal led to a battle between Msimanga and former city manager Moeketsi Mosola, as the latter was implicated in awarding the deal which the auditor-general found was done irregularly.
Msimanga resigned in February, claiming he needed to focus on his Gauteng premiership camwere paign. He was succeeded by Mokgalapa, who left his parliamentary job to head the city.
Under Mokgalapa’s rule, the city manager and the mayor agreed to part ways. Mosola stepped down from his position in August.
An audio tape was leaked in November in which Mokgalapa was heard gossiping about and
An audio tape was leaked in November in which Mokgalapa was heard gossiping about and mocking other DA members.
mocking other DA members. He was also allegedly having sex with Sheila-Lynn Senkubuge, the transport MEC at the time.
Senkubuge resigned shortly after the scandal made headlines. Mokgalapa was placed on special leave while the DA launched an investigation into the mayor for allegedly sharing sensitive information with Senkubuge.
That is when the EFF and ANC joined forces to oust Mokgalapa. In a special council sitting this month, the two parties submitted urgent no-confidence motions against the mayor and council speaker Mathebe.
Depending on Tuchten’s ruling, the DA could lose it’s third and last metropolitan municipality.