ActionSA Requests Gauteng Local Governance MEC Urgently Intervene in Ekurhuleni Council

ActionSA requests that Gauteng Local Governance MEC, Mzi Khumalo, urgently intervene in the City of Ekurhuleni Council after its Speaker, Raymond Dhlamini, from the Democratic Alliance (DA) this evening purposefully collapsed council proceedings.

Section 139 of the Constitution empowers the Local Government MEC to intervene when a municipality is unable to fulfil an Executive obligation in terms of the Constitution or legislation.

Dhlamini walked out of special council meeting, where he was set to face a motion of no confidence and the city’s adjustment budget was set to serve, leading to a breakdown in the council meeting.

Regardless of the merits of the motions of no confidence Dhlamini was due to face, it is the Speaker’s responsibility to facilitate the democratic business of council, and his behaviour therefore falls outside the scope of what can be accepted by a speaker duly elected to serve council and the city’s residents.

The inability of the municipality to pass important items, including the adjustment budget, now directly threatens the sustainability of the municipality, and its ability to provide services to its residents.

To make matters worse, this isn’t Dhlamini’s first time displaying this contempt for council decorum. A week ago he attempted to block scheduling a motion of no confidence in him by summarily ending a meeting of the programming committee prematurely.

The City of Ekurhuleni cannot be held ransom by the undemocratic practices of its Speaker, and the continued delays in council business by the DA-led coalition are further exacerbating the existing service delivery issues in that city.  There is a human cost to his dilatory tactics; the people of Ekurhuleni suffer most in the end.

As such ActionSA will formally write to MEC Khumalo requesting he urgently intervene in the City of Ekurhuleni to protect the residents from further declines in the delivery of basic services.

As a constructive opposition in the City of Ekurhuleni, ActionSA does not seek to destabilise the DA-led coalition. But, as a party that values the rule of law, we will ensure that no public official engages in the undemocratic conduct – regardless of which political party they are from.