The Speaker of Thembelihle Municipality, Danny Jonas, has been reinstated after he was removed from his position last week.
THE SPEAKER of Thembelihle Municipality, Danny Jonas, has been reinstated after he was removed from his position last week, when Marnus Visser was appointed to replace him.
According to an urgent interdict that was obtained on June 25, the Electoral Commission (IEC), Thembelihle Municipality and the Siyathemba Community Movement (SCM) have been restrained from replacing Jonas as a councillor.
Jonas said he was expelled from the SCM, where due processes were not followed.
“The chief financial officer, in his capacity as the acting municipal manager, declared a vacancy at the IEC to fill my position. The CFO is not supposed to serve as the acting municipal manager and therefore did not have the powers to remove me,” said Jonas.
He stated that he had called a special council meeting on Wednesday, June 28 to approve the budget and integrated development plan.
“There will be dire consequences if the budgets are not approved by the end of the month.”
He added that the SCM did not have the mandate to work with the ANC, while it had entered into a coalition agreement with the ruling party.
“The only time the municipality received a clean audit was when I was serving as the mayor. Service delivery is suffering while salaries of all staff including expanded public works and community workers projects have not been paid. An irregular contract worth R11 million was awarded for the renovation of the stadium in Hopetown while it cost R3 million to construct.”
Jonas stated that a 3% salary increase was approved for councillors.
The chairperson of the SCM, Xolile Phillips, indicated that he was not given any notice that court proceedings would take place at the Northern Cape High Court over the weekend.
“I would have opposed the application but I was not informed that the matter would proceed on June 25.”
Phillips added that he would review the application.
“The SCM secretary, Ronald Februarie, supports Jonas and he must have falsely represented the movement and misled the court. He is not the chairperson.”
He stated that a vacancy was declared by the IEC after Jonas was expelled from the SCM as he was not following the party mandate.
“Jonas was not representing the leadership and was acting out of his own accord. He refused to attend his disciplinary hearing.”
He indicated that they had abided by the court order to reinstate Jonas.
“I intend to approach the court on an urgent basis to challenge the ruling.”
Phillips stated that Marnus Visser was elected to be the Speaker.
“He contested the local government elections as an independent. He decided to join the SCM, however, it was too late for him to register as a SCM candidate with the IEC. He became a member of the SCM after the elections and managed to attract far more voters in the district than Jonas.”
Februarie meanwhile claimed that he was the rightful SCM chairperson.
“Jonas was removed unlawfully. The chief financial officer wrote a letter to the IEC whereas he committed perjury by pretending to be the municipal manager when he was removed from this position in March.
“We will return to court to have the mayor who recently accompanied the ANC to Germany removed as the chairperson of the SCM.”
He stated that Jonas had challenged his expulsion in court.
“The IEC advised that his name should not be removed from the roll before the case is finalised.”