All the city’s leaders
FORMER eThekwini council executive committee member Nomvuzo Shabalala is expected to be voted in as deputy mayor and the man she replaces, Logie Naidoo, is to become the council Speaker when the municipality’s new leadership officially begins its work today.
This will start with the inauguration of the 205 ward and proportional representation councillors who will be in office for the next five years, followed by the election of the Speaker, which the ANC yesterday confirmed would be former deputy mayor Naidoo.
Naidoo would then preside over the election of the new mayor, deputy mayor and members of the executive committee.
The ANC last week announced that James Nxumalo would take over the reins from outgoing mayor Obed Mlaba.
Shabalala would also head the economic development and planning committee.
Nxumalo steps in as mayor while the city is being investigated for alleged widespread financial mismanagement and irregular expenditure, amid claims that R3.5 billion in contracts might have been awarded irregularly over the past 10 years.
Nxumalo said that combating corruption, fraud and maladministration would be on the top of his agenda.
He also warned last week that “it will not be business as usual”.
“We will make sure that we implement the code of conduct governing councillors, because councillors are not allowed to do business with the municipalities. We will be very strict in terms of the Municipal Finance Management Act,” he told The Mercury.
Yesterday, ANC provincial secretary Sihle Zikalala said that Shabalala, who has served as an executive committee member for several years and had been chairwoman of the health, safety and social services committee since 2006, would be the deputy mayor.
ANC acting regional chairman Stanley Xulu would be appointed ANC chief whip, replacing Fawzia Peer.
The executive committee, which would be chaired by Nxumalo, welcomes back ANC members Nigel Gumede, Zandile Gumede and Peer.
The only ANC member to be dropped from the committee is Visvin Reddy, who would be replaced by regional ANC Women’s League chairwoman Nondumiso Cele.
Nigel Gumede would remain head of the housing cluster, which would include cleansing, solid waste and human resources. He would also take over as chairman of the infrastructure committee.
Zandile Gumede would now chair the health, safety and social services committee, while the Masakhane, grants-in-aid, non-racism and non-sexism committee would be in Cele’s hands.
Zikalala dismissed suggestion that Naidoo was being demoted, saying he had been deputy mayor for two terms and could no longer remain in that position.
The ANC, which secured 126 of the 205 seats in council, would propose the 10-member executive committee at today’s inaugural council meeting.
If the council agrees with the ANC’s proposal – which is highly likely – the DA would be entitled to two executive committee seats. These would be occupied by DA caucus leader Tex Collins and councillor Ronnie Veeran.
The NFP would get one seat, but the party said its representative would only be announced today. Patrick Pillay would again occupy the Minority Front’s lone seat.