By Libuseng Nyaka
QWAQWA – The expected tabling of a vote of no confidence against the coalition government in Maluti-a-Phofung local municipality could see the municipality dissolved or put under administration should it continue to be postponed.
The tabling of the vote of no confidence against Speaker Paratlane Motloung, executive mayor Gilbert Mokotso and Council whip Moeketsi Lebesa which is expected to be piloted by the ANC, has already been postponed two times.
The Speaker of the council is expected to announce a date in the second week of January for the tabling of the vote of no confidence. This after it was postponed on December 22 following council’s failure to Quora tell.
Despite having 39 councillors petitioned for a council sitting for the vote of no confidence to be tabled, the ANC councillors who are expected to table the motion shunned the council sitting when they realised they did not have numbers. The Map16 coalition used the same approach to avoid being ousted. Only 20 of the 70 councillors attended the sitting, which led to the postponement to early this month.
Council Chief whip Moeketsi Lebesa has warned that if the matter is not solved and the vote of no confidence seems to be a priority over important matters that need to be discussed, this could see the municipality dissolved and a by election called. In the worst case scenario, the municipality could be under administration.
“If section 39 b is invoked we will find ourself back to 2018 where this municipality was under administration and not governed by local people; unless a responsible leader emerges and unites all the councillors to avert this and resolve the challenges of this municipality. We are putting our interests above those of the community. We must introspect and come together as councillors to solve our problems.”
Motloung announced that following the failure to quorate, he waited for 30 minutes and added more 15 more minutes before he could postpone the council sitting when it could not make up number needed for council to sit.
“The continuation of this council sitting will resume in the second week of January. We are in politics; we cannot pretend we are not. We have not done anything against the law; we have used the same law to save ourselves and we cannot blame anybody. The Standard Rules and Orders say, if a scheduled council sitting time passes without a quorum to start a council, we can wait for 30 minutes if after that the number still does not add up, the Speaker can add more time. Then he can postpone the meeting, hence what I have done.”
But the ANC leader in the council Mandlankosi Dlhamini is adamant that their motion of no confidence will succeed next week, despite his own party not having enough numbers to oust the troika as it is also divided on the matter .
He refuted claims that they were ordered to withdraw the motion of no confidence.
“There is no party position, it is us who are giving the direction. There is no instruction from the IPC or from the nation saying we must withdraw. It is certain individuals. We are the people of Maluti-a- Phofung, we experience the crisis here of not having electricity for five to 10 days; other wards do not have electricity for three months.”
Both EFF and DA , parties that seem to be king makers in the council say they will not support the motion expected to be table next week.
EFF ‘s Mohau Molwelwe said his party has never been a mere spectator in the politics of Maluti-a-Phofung.
“We have always been firm in taking decisions informed by dynamics. In EFF we have democratic centralism and controlled directly by upper structure. We are going to vote against the motion, we will vote against any motion of ANC.”
DA Alison Oates said the party will remain independent.
“We only have five councillors and assist in improving governance as independents, we are not allied with ANC or Map 16. In my opinion Map16 is making a massive mess in running this municipality. The ANC, too, made a massive mess for decades.