- The vote of no confidence in the mayor of Johannesburg will be heard on Thursday.
- The ninth extraordinary session of the council lasts two days and began on Wednesday.
- On the agenda was the vote on the R2 billion short-term loan and motions to remove the mayor.
Joburg residents will have to wait until Thursday to find out if they have a new mayor.
The council’s ninth extraordinary session, which began on Wednesday, lasts two days.
There were two big items on the agenda: the council vote on the proposed R2 billion short-term loan and the no-confidence motions in Mayor Mpho Phalatse.
The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) loan was not approved on Wednesday.
The council managed to get through most of the agenda and will continue with the program on Thursday, starting early with the first vote of no confidence in Phalatse.
READ | Proposed R2bn development bank loan again denied in Joburg council
The first motion was moved by Margaret Arnolds of the AIC and seconded by Thapelo Amad of Al Jama-ah.
The second motion of no confidence in the mayor was proposed by ATM’s Lubabalo Magwentshu and seconded by PAC councilor Tebogo Nkokou.
For most of the day there was talk in the corridor that both motions would be thrown out because the EFF would not vote with the ANC.
This was after the decision by EFF leader Julius Malema, who, two weeks ago, said the party would vote in defense of the DA in Johannesburg until the ANC agreed to back the EFF in Ekurhuleni.
The decision was made because the ANC and EFF disagreed over who should rule in Ekurhuleni after DA Mayor Tania Campbell was ousted in a vote of no confidence last month.
Campbell was reinstated following a vote in council over this disagreement between the EFF and the ANC.
By late afternoon, the opposition parties in the Johannesburg council appeared to be meeting with each other.
If the EFF decides to vote with the ANC, the opposition parties will have the majority vote and Phalatse is likely to be sacked.
Councilors speculate that if the opposition parties win, they can put a minority party leader in as mayor to make up for what happened in Ekurhuleni.
Meanwhile, Finance MMC Julie Suddaby said she was disappointed that the council had turned down the R2 billion loan.
“Downvoting for the second time disappointed me. It’s short-sighted, especially since the MPG [Market Practitioners Group] it had clearly shown that it was a normal business decision to help the city’s cash flow at this time.
“This action confirms that the ANC and the coalition of minority parties do not have the residents and businesses of Joburg at the center of their decision-making. It is not the residents of the city who took the opposition seats in the council today “.
A total of 137 councilors rejected the request and 130 councilors voted in favor.
Meanwhile, Sinovuyo Mpakama, Chief Financial Officer of the Johannesburg City Interim Group, said: “We are aware that there is great concern about salaries, and I would like to reassure staff that November and December salaries are covered despite the nay”.