DA councillors sworn into legislature
Democratic Alliance provincial chairman Andrew Whitfield and former Raymond Mhlaba councillor Nomvano Zibonda were sworn into the Bhisho legislature yesterday.
This comes after two MPLs from the party resigned days apart.
Speaker at the legislature Noxolo Kiviet, in welcoming the newest members in the legislature, said the institution was one of the most respected in the country.
She said the prescribed oath was a guiding factor that needed to be upheld.
“We welcome the new members and we hope that they will bring new ideas, new vibrancy, into the house. We are serving the interests of the public and that is what should always be the priority of all those who are members of this parliament,” said Kiviet.
The DA lost two MPLs in one month when former premier Nosimo Balindlela and former party chairwoman Veliswa Mvenya stepped down.
Balindlela has rejoined the ANC. She tendered her resignation after holding two meetings with party leaders in the Eastern Cape earlier in the month.
While Mvenya officially resigned days after Balindlela, Mvenya first communicated her intention to resign to Bhisho legislature leader Bobby Stevenson.
Stevenson, who was part of the swearing-in ceremony, said the two men had a lot of experience and had gone through much leadership growth within the party.
“Andrew has until today been serving in Nelson Mandela Bay as a mayoral committee member responsible for economic development, and Nomvano has been at Raymond Mhlaba and had been with the Democratic Alliance Student Organisation,” said Stevenson.
Zibonda, 32, will now be the youngest member in the legislature and will sit in the sports, arts and culture portfolio.
Whitfield, however, is a veteran as the former mayoral committee member also served in national parliament.
The ceremony was closed by some words from the deputy speaker of the legislature, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, who said the two new MPLs were entering a new phase of political power.
He said with all their experience the house was willing to learn from them and hear their views.
“You are now subjects of the public. We welcome you into the policy-making body of this beautiful province,” said Qoboshiyane.