The Guard

The Truth On Board

Chief whip escapes no-confidence vote

By Libuseng Nyaka

QWAQWA – The Chief Whip of Maluti-A-Phofung local municipality, Moeketsi Lebesa has escaped a vote of no confidence piloted by Map 16 Civic Movement’s (Map16) Shashapa Motaung.
This after the ANC-led coalition government managed to garner 37 votes against 21 during the voting which was meant to unseat Lebesa.

Among those that voted against the motion were five Democratic Alliance members and the small parties that have formed the coalition government led by the ANC. The Economic Freedom Fighter abstained.

Motaung brought forward a catalogue of accusations against the Chief Whip.
“I, Shashapa Motaung, seconded by councillors who duly appended their signatures hereby move for the removal of whip of the council, councillor Moeketsi Lebesa based on the following reasons, failure to foster unity among represented political parties in the council.

“Secondly, interference in the affairs of municipal administration, being every time mayor represented an item after that the Whip will come and change it. That is why our resolutions are not implemented.

“Another reason is that of misleading the executive mayor and council by deliberately misinterpreting the legislation governing the municipal council and administration. You remember when executive mayor presented an item and all of us deliberated on it, Chief Whip would raise a hand and change what executive mayor had said and even contravene the Act.”

In response to the allegation, Lebesa said he will not waste time cross-examining Motaung because, clearly, he is not the author of the motion.
“The way he even struggles to read, he does not understand what he is reading, it would be wasting this council’s time, although it is within his rights to do so. The motion is unfounded.

“What I like about this motion is there is nowhere where I am accused of corruption, but I will respond to the two allegations. They say I failed to foster unity among councils. Since this municipality was established since 2000, there’s no chief whip who has united the councillors like me.

“One, I have saved this municipality: in 2022 we were at Monontsha passing a budget. The budget was voted for by 34 against 23. They left the meeting happy thinking that the budget had passed. I told them that the budget did not pass. I worked with other whips from political parties and convinced them of the importance of passing the budget, that is when it passed.”

His sentiments were echoed by spokesperson of DA Moses Lefuma.
“We voted for what is right. It is a well-known factor that councillor Lebesa has for so long been playing part of a mediator. He has been good in carrying out his duties, so we voted for council Lebesa against the motion that was put against him. I cannot say we are putting our whole trust on him but, to be honest, he has been good in carrying out his duties.”

Delighted Map chief whip Moeketsi Lebesa escapes a no-confidence vote.

But Map 16 Civic Movement member Paratlane Motloung, who withdrew his motion against the chairperson of the Municipal Accounts Committee, Tumelo Thulo after their first motion fell off, said this was just the beginning.

“You will remember even in the past, during the time when the coalition was led by Map 16, we had about three motions against us which did not succeed but ultimately four succeeded. We also believe that sooner or later these motions will come back. About the three motions that we withdrew, it was a tactical move on our side.”

Another motion which was also withdrawn was against chairperson of section 79 committee councillor Ntsoaki Makgalemele and another one to replace the councillor representing MAP in Thabo Mofutsanyana district municipality.