EFF mayor Olegogeng Tumodi and EFF Speaker Goitsemodimo Halter have vacated their positions at Phokwane Municipality despite appealing a court judgment that found that the council meeting that was convened to appoint them was invalid.
EFF MAYOR Olegogeng Tumodi and EFF Speaker Goitsemodimo Halter have vacated their positions at Phokwane Local Municipality despite appealing a court judgment that found that the council meeting that was convened to appoint them was invalid.
Tumodi, a former ANC councillor, joined the EFF this week.
ANC provincial secretary Deshi Ngxanga stated that Tumodi did not appeal his expulsion with the provincial disciplinary committee, where he was found guilty of misconduct in January.
“In fact, we are happy that he left as his departure confirmed our suspicions all along that he was working together with the opposition. Tumodi forfeited his right as a councillor. A vacancy was declared with the Electoral Commission and a by-election will overrule any court appeal,” said Ngxanga.
The party accused Tumodi of not attending ANC caucuses while attending separate meetings and collaborating with opposition parties.
EFF provincial secretary Shadrack Tlhaole stated that they respected the decision of the court.
“We are not hooligans and respect the rule of law. The situation at Phokwane Municipality was depriving the community of service delivery and we took a decision that Tumodi and Halter should step down even though they have appealed the court decision,” said Tlhaole.
He indicated that ANC councillors Tebogo Afrika and Portia Selogilwe had since been reinstated as the Phokwane mayor and Speaker.
“It is not about positions, the EFF will not go in wanting a project or a tender. We are not only thinking about today but rather planning the future.”
Tlhaole added that Tumodi was selected as the EFF candidate to stand for the by-elections on April 20.
“We take pride in him as a credible leader who is obedient and is not afraid of standing up against wrong things. He was not siding with the opposition, he was merely dealing with the rot and the corruption. We are confident of a win in the by-elections, the EFF has a pattern of increasing support in the Phokwane area.
“The ANC ridiculed him and made the community believe that he was ill-disciplined. It is unfortunate that the ruling party appoints illiterate leaders, mayors and councillors.”
Tlhaole added that Tumodi had approached the party to become a member.
“Tumodi fell in love with the EFF and its commitment programmes. He comes to us with a clean slate, with no history of corruption. He is willing to share his last cent to help the community. We will not be intimidated and have nothing to lose in the upcoming by-elections.”