#HandsOffJoburg: Multi-Party Government’s repair and rebuild suspended in favour of ANC’s festival of corruption

Issued by Dr Mpho Phalatse – DA Johannesburg Leader
10 Oct 2022 in News

Note to editors: The following remarks were delivered by DA Johannesburg Leader, Dr Mpho Phalatse during a media  briefing on the unjustified obstruction of the good work done by the multi-party government under her leadership. Please find attached photos here, here and here.

The following Members of the Mayoral Committee (MMCs) were present:

MMC Leah Knott

MMC Julie Suddaby

MMC Michael Sun

MMC Belinda Echeozonjoku

Present as well,

Chief Whip of Council, Cllr Tyrell Meyers

DA Deputy Caucus Leader, Cllr Bongani Nkomo, and

Cllr Vasco Da Gama

Members of the media and Joburg residents

On Friday, 30 September 2022, the residents of Joburg and our democratic order suffered a devastating hit.

The Council events of that day saw the laws of the country and Rules of Council thrown one side, in a desperate grab at power by a corrupt cabal whose only goal is to control and corrupt the City’s R77,3-billion budget.

As previously stated, as the Democratic Alliance we are of the position that the Programming Committee of Thursday, 29 September 2022, and the subsequent Extraordinary Meeting of Council of Friday, 30 September 2022, and the decisions taken thereof were unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.

We are so confident in our assessment that I, on behalf of the Party and the 6-million residents of Joburg, filed papers in the High Court, arguing this point. In this regard, the High Court is set to hear our case on 18 October 2022.

Members of the media,

I want to again reiterate that this is not about the positions we hold or once held, this is about the rule of law. Whether we go back into government is one issue, but our removal from Government and the preceding events were illegal. And therefore, as legislators who swore to “obey, respect and uphold the Constitution and all other laws of the Republic of South Africa,” it would be wrong of us to simply ‘let this go’ on that basis alone.

I will go through the arguments of our court papers, while my Colleagues, will outline what they found in their portfolios, when they took Office, and the work that has been done to begin the repair and rebuild of Joburg; illustrating what is at stake if we do not challenge last week’s events, and allow the now ANC Joburg government to sit illegally.

As submitted to the High Court, our prayers are:

  1. Declaring that the decision of the Speaker, taken on 29 September 2022, to schedule an Extraordinary Meeting of Council for 30 September was unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.
  2. Declaring that that the decision of the Programming Committee of Council, taken on 29 September 2022 to place a motion of no confidence in the Executive Mayor of the City of Johannesburg on the agenda for the Extraordinary Council Meeting on 30 September 2022, was unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.
  3. Declaring that the decision of Council, taken on 30 September 2022, to adopt a motion of no confidence, in the Executive Mayor was unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.
  4. Declaring the decision of Council to elect an Executive Mayor on 30 September 2022 as unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid.
  5. Declaring that I, along with the Executive of City, maintain Office
  6. Declaring that all decisions taken by the current Executive Mayor are unlawful, unconstitutional, and invalid, and are reviewed and set aside;
  7. We are seeking a cost order And a personal cost order on Cllr Colleen Makhubele

This is a fight for Joburg, the rule of law, residents, and service delivery.

Service delivery will collapse under the illegally installed government, as the taps of corruption that we closed, will be re-opened until there is nothing left.

Members of the media,

We have been informed that the illegitimate ANC-administration has issued a directive that all the City’s Entity Boards be replaced in order to appoint their own people to continue facilitating their looting and corruption. We are concerned about what will happen to the Entities and service delivery through this move, hence we will put pressure on the courts to reinstate the legitimate government for our residents. Please see documents here and here.

Members of the media,

The Field Band Foundation saga was brought to Council during the previous administration. It is baffling why the ANC-administration wants to take this matter back to Council. I have fully participated in the Hawks’ investigation as a witness rather than an accused. I am also aware that the former Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba has taken the Public Protector Report on the matter to court.

Members of the media,

We were in government for less than a year, and the City was starting to gradually look and feel better.

Our work thus far has been outlined in detail in the Multi-Party Government’s Golden Report.

The events leading up to the 30 September’s illegal removal of the Multi-Party Government were a political hit not just on the law, but also on the work we were doing to stop corruption and advance a pragmatic service delivery programme that was already showing results.

Ladies and gentlemen,

I am not interested in pointing fingers at this person or that party.

What needs to be done now is for the law to take its course, and for us to reorganise and regroup for the sake of Johannesburg and its 6-million residents.

I now hand over to the MMCs, who will detail what they had to contend with in their various portfolios, and the progress made in repairing and rebuilding the City.

I thank you

Note to editors: Please find remarks by MMCs below.

Cllr Julie Suddaby the MMC for Finance- Remarks made by Julie Suddaby

Cllr Leah Knott the MMC for Group Corporate and Shared Services- Remarks made by Leah Knott

Cllr Belinda Echeozonjoku the MMC for Development Planning – Remarks made by Belinda Echeozonjoku

Cllr Michael Sun the MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services- Remarks made by Michael Sun