DA wins mayorship of hotly-contested Metsimaholo in Free State
The DA has gained control of Metsimaholo municipality in the Free State after its mayoral candidate Jeff Zwane was elected unopposed.
Zwane’s election this week came after the resignation of the EFF’s Selloane Motjeane a few days after her surprise election.
Motjeane had been told to resign by the EFF because her election was the result of support from disgruntled ANC councillors.
Addressing the media last week, EFF leader Julius Malema said he asked Motjeane to resign because the ANC faction which had supported her had already allegedly been demanding she do “illegal things” for their benefit.
“She was happy but the ANC was already making demands, asking for illegal things. The EFF in Metsimaholo municipality does not have numbers. Why should we get into an arrangement that is bound to fail because voting there would depend on the mood of ANC councillors? We are not in a coalition with anyone,” he said.
The ANC in the region has since told Sowetan it was a strategic move to hand over the municipality to the EFF.
ANC Fezile Dabi regional coordinator Thabo Mabasa made the revelation last week.
“We decided we will give them mayorship, take the speaker, chief whip and a number of MMCs. We took two section 79 committees [including the municipal public accounts committee]. We had to reach a compromise that allowed for services to be delivered and governance to be improved,” Mabasa said.
He told the publication the ANC in the region did not want to lose the municipality to the DA in a similar way the party did in Gauteng.
It is, however, unclear how Zwane is going to deal with his government in the municipality as the ANC has h the positions of speaker and chief whip.
The party has 16 seats in the municipality while the DA and the EFF have 12 seats each.
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