Mayor and speaker triumphant after no confidence motion fails

The J.B. Marks executive mayor, Kgotso Khumalo and the speaker, Elias Mogeemang defeated the motion of no confidence against them tabled by the DA on Tuesday.

The DA believes that the executive mayor and the speaker ‘diminished the role of council to a mere rubber stamp and have deliberately and intentionally refused to hold the accounting officer accountable…’
The usual ‘cat and mouse’ display of bickering at the chambers saw 34 ANC councillors voting against the motion, 27 DA and FF Plus voting for the motion, two EFF councillors walking out and two Independents abstaining.
The meeting raised important issues affecting the municipality, feedback on reports before the council and a light-hearted moment following an impeccable presentation from the logo design panel on the new corporate identity of the J.B. Marks Municipality.
Alderman Chris Landsberg bemoaned the financial state of the municipality and demanded an explanation for the R69 million that the municipality owes the Department of Water Affairs. ‘I do not know what our financial position is. I do not trust this woman (referring to the municipal manager). The MMC for finance, Kelvin Johnson described this utterance as ‘disrespect from the DA’. The speaker added that this kind of language incites disruptions in the meeting.
Hans-Jurie Moolman, the DA Caucus chairperson pointed out that there are three outstanding reports that have not served before the council, namely Future Phambili Petroleum, Indhela (a telephone contract) and I4 Technology. The mayor replied that the police were still investigating two of these reports and the matter was, therefore, sub judice.
David Kham of the independents suggested that the matter of the MM has been discussed ad nauseam and has become the norm at every council meeting. He said it is evident that most councillors do not like the MM. ‘This woman has been through a lot. There have been court battles and some say she is corrupt and has failed the municipality. Why don’t you just settle with her and let her go?’ he asked.
Another elephant in the room was the 41 bodies that were reburied in Ventersdorp last Month. The ANC’s Dodo Maneli, the MMC for community services presented a synopsis of the report and deemed the matter closed. Moolman questioned the outstanding issues pertaining to the incident that saw 49 graves lying in a waterlogged cemetery.
‘This was traumatic for the family members. What caused this unfortunate incident? Who are the people responsible? What steps will be taken? Public money was spent and someone should be held responsible,’ he said.
There was a lighthearted moment when the logo panel revealed the new logo and crest for the new J.B. Marks Municipality. The DA’s Dr Bertus le Roux described the new corporate identity as professional and well thought out and also made a subtle reference to the new purple corporate identity of NWU. ‘What was done here exceeds by far what was done at the university,’ he joked.
Selogile Leshage

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