The MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) in the Eastern Cape, Zolile Williams, has noted “the worrisome” political changes in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro (NMBM) Council, saying these continue to destabilise the institution.
In a statement on Thursday, the MEC said it was in his interest to see stability restored in the Metro.
Williams’ concerns come after ANC-led coalition government mayor Eugene Johnson was on Wednesday voted out in a motion of no confidence poll during a council meeting. DA councillor Retief Odendaal was voted in as her replacement at the same meeting.
The MEC in the statement said: “The abrupt political changes do not translate into quick service delivery to the residents of Gqeberha. Although this is a democratic process for political parties to change allegiances, this should not subordinate the interests of the people of Gqeberha at the altar of subjective political interests.”
Williams said he believes that the amendment of Section 12 of the Municipal Structures Act 117 of 1998 in respect of the Metro was the “only solution that may bring about stability to the municipality”.
“The amendment is not aimed at advantaging any political party but is an attempt to have a functional Municipal Council but above all, to help the leadership to focus on taking services to the residents of Gqeberha.
“My main concern is more about the capacity of the municipality to deliver services to the people, for now, it is difficult to be certain whether services are being delivered seamlessly due to political parties looking at their own interests than to take services to the people of Gqeberha,” said Williams.