Msun­duzi ‘coun­cil chaos’ con­demned

The Mercury - - NEWS - Thami Magubane

ANC coun­cil­lors in the em­bat­tled Msun­duzi Mu­nic­i­pal­ity have been ac­cused of bring­ing their “fac­tional bat­tles” to the coun­cil and col­laps­ing its func­tion­ing.

This af­ter fewer than 20 ANC coun­cil­lors are said to have at­tended a spe­cial coun­cil meet­ing yes­ter­day meant to address nu­mer­ous is­sues, in­clud­ing the dis­ci­plin­ing of mu­nic­i­pal man­ager Sizwe Hadebe.

Hadebe is un­der pres­sure from the op­po­si­tion party and his se­nior man­agers who all want him gone for al­le­ga­tions of wrong­do­ing.

This is the sec­ond meet­ing in as many weeks that the coun­cil could not sit be­cause it did not have a quo­rum.

Last week, around 30 ANC coun­cil­lors failed to at­tend an­other coun­cil meet­ing.

An ANC coun­cil­lor speak­ing on con­di­tion of anonymity said coun­cil busi­ness was com­ing sec­ond best.

“These coun­cil­lors are out there plot­ting some­thing. Their ac­tions could be an in­vi­ta­tion for the mu­nic­i­pal­ity to be placed un­der ad­min­is­tra­tion.

“This is the sec­ond time the coun­cil has failed to sit. The func­tion­ing of the coun­cil is one of the things looked at when a mu­nic­i­pal­ity is about to be placed un­der ad­min­is­tra­tion,” said the coun­cil­lor.

Op­po­si­tion par­ties said the con­duct of ANC coun­cil­lors was pre­vent­ing them from play­ing their over­sight role.

“The MM (mu­nic­i­pal man­ager) is­sue is one of many is­sues that needed to be set­tled. The spe­cial coun­cil was sched­uled be­cause the nor­mal coun­cil on May 30 did not com­plete all mat­ters due to be ad­dressed.

“We had two thick agen­das that we needed to get through. There were in­ter­nal au­dit re­ports that we needed to dis­cuss.

“It can­not be that for two weeks in a row the coun­cil is un­able to sit be­cause it can­not form a quo­rum. If the coun­cil is no longer able to func­tion, it should be placed un­der ad­min­is­tra­tion,” he said.

IFP coun­cil­lor Thi­na­sonke Ntombela said the ANC party prob­lems were play­ing out in the coun­cil func­tions.

“Their ab­sence is co-or­di­nated some­where. This is or­gan­ised chaos that must trig­ger ar­ti­cles to place the mu­nic­i­pal­ity un­der ad­min­is­tra­tion.”

At­tempts to speak to mayor Themba Njilo and deputy mayor Thobani Zuma were un­suc­cess­ful.

ANC chief whip True­man Magubane said coun­cil­lors had sub­mit­ted apolo­gies for their ab­sence. “It’s only when a coun­cil­lor misses three con­sec­u­tive meet­ings with­out apol­ogy that ac­tion can be taken.”

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