Home News Sol councillors put the community first – DA

Sol councillors put the community first – DA

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“The councillors went beyond narrow party politics to uphold the interests of the community.”

TAKING A STAND: Opposition councillors yesterday passed a motion of no confidence in Sol Plaatje Executive Mayor, Mangaliso Matika and elected Pule Thabane as acting mayor and Boitumelo Stout as acting speaker. Pictures: Danie van der Lith and Sandi Kwon Hoo

THE DA in the Northern Cape has welcomed the removal of Mangaliso Matika as executive mayor of Sol Plaatje Municipality, with the party’s provincial leader, Andrew Louw, crediting this development to the non-partisan efforts of councillors.

The DA’s motion of no confidence in Matika was approved by a majority of councillors present at a special council meeting at the municipality yesterday afternoon.

In a statement issued after the meeting, Louw said that despite Matika having been “unfit” to lead the municipality, his removal from office would have been far less likely had it not been for the councillors from various political parties being able to put their differences aside in the interest of the community of Kimberley.

“We welcome the support we received from the councillors present, including representatives of the EFF, the FF+ and the ANC, who made his removal possible,” said Louw.

“The councillors went beyond narrow party politics to uphold the interests of the community.”

Louw added that the DA was cautiously optimistic that yesterday’s proceedings would allow for many of the valid concerns of the community to be heard and addressed by council.

Removal

“We hope that Matika’s removal will avert the shutdown and allow for the normal operation of schools, hospitals, clinics and other government services today. The previous shutdown resulted in unprecedented damage to property, loss of income and looting as a criminal element attempted to hijack the matter. Kimberley simply cannot afford a repeat of this situation to happen.

“Under Matika’s leadership, service delivery has collapsed and the municipal administration has been replaced by a network of political patronage,” Louw added.

“We call on the new acting mayor, Pule Thabane, to avoid the errors that his predecessor made and to prioritise the needs of the people above petty politics.

“While Matika’s removal is a step in the right direction, it will take more than one ANC faction replacing another to fix what has been broken.”

Louw added that the party was aware that Matika’s faction would “try all sort of desperate tactics to have his removal set aside”.

“To him we say: The people have spoken, council has spoken and you have lost.”

Louw stated further that the DA would continue to monitor the ongoing Section 106 investigation to ensure that Matika was still held accountable for the decisions taken under his leadership.