PA, UF hold new bay coalition talks with DA

Coalition government talks are heating up as the UFm and PA confirm meeting with the DA.
Coalition government talks are heating up as the UFm and PA confirm meeting with the DA.
Image: FILE

Some of the smaller parties in Nelson Mandela Bay sat down with the DA on Saturday in an attempt to form a new coalition government.

The Patriotic Alliance and United Front had a four-hour meeting with the DA at the weekend to discuss the move.

The three parties make up a combined 59 seats in the council, with a majority of 61 out of 120 needed to govern.

The PA and UF were previously aligned with the ANC, AIC and, recently, the UDM in a coalition that governs the city.

However, the minority parties have become fed up with the ANC as co-operative governance and traditional affairs MEC Xolile Nqatha has threatened to place the city under administration.

UF regional chair Xolisile Peter said his party was in talks with the DA.

Referring to the ANC, he said: “We can’t be partners with people who are not genuine and are arrogant.”

PA councillor Marlon Daniels said the parties had met to discuss a “regime change”.

The meeting was used to talk about the arrogance of the ANC who do not appreciate the current coalition and fail to consult on anything

“The meeting was used to talk about the arrogance of the ANC who do not appreciate the current coalition and fail to consult on anything.”

Asked if forming a coalition came up at the meeting, he said: “We discussed forming a new coalition ahead of Tuesday’s scheduled council meeting.”

Daniels said the parties had agreed to form a new coalition until the next municipal elections.

“As a collective, we are going to fight these scavengers who are hell-bent to hand the till of the city to the ANC.

“They want to place us under administration to control the coffers.”

He said acting mayor Thsonono Buyeye had read out a letter from Nqatha last week during a virtual meeting, where the MEC was quoted as saying the city would be placed under administration using Section 139(1) A of the constitution.

This would see an administrator deployed to the city, who would have similar powers as a city manager.

The city is slowly being placed under administration. The ANC is taking baby steps and this last letter proves this

“The city is slowly being placed under administration.

“The ANC is taking baby steps and this last letter proves this.”

DA Eastern Cape leader and Bay councillor Nqaba Bhanga declined to comment.

Daniels also questioned how the speaker, Buyelwa Mafaya, had called for Tuesday’s council meeting without consulting the coalition government.

According to the municipal notice, Mafaya said the meeting was scheduled to appoint an acting city manager.

This after Mvuleni Mapu, who was acting in the position, was arrested on fraud and corruption charges, and released on bail.

ANC regional spokesperson JP Pretorius said the party was surprised by the stance of some of the smaller parties.

“When matters of critical importance happen and get deliberated on within this coalition space all parties involved should be able to engage without hesitation and find consensus before moving on, which was not always the case.”

He said the ANC had objected and advised the coalition partners against the appointment of Mapu as the acting city manager, yet he was still appointed.

However, several ANC councillors had voted in favour of Mapu becoming acting city manager.

“Earlier this month, the ANC had a vacancy in the mayoral committee through a resignation of one of our deployees,” Pretorius said.

“This vacancy was then filled in our absence with a member from one of the smaller parties.

“Mongameli Bobani, who was removed as mayor, is now a mayoral committee member against our approval and rights in the coalition agreement.

“So as the ANC we can never be accused of arrogance on our sentiments and lack of consultation in line with these developments where our advice was not taken, our position not respected and our equal participation not appreciated.”

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