South Africa: ANC Praises Gauteng Cogta MEC for Suspending Two High-Ranking DA Councillors

Gauteng Cogta MEC Lebogang Maile exercised his responsibility enshrined in the Constitution when he suspended two high-ranking DA councillors in Johannesburg and Tshwane, the provincial ANC has said.

On Thursday, the party released a statement praising Maile's announcement that he would suspend with immediate effect former Johannesburg speaker Vasco da Gama and Tshwane speaker Katlego Mathebe for breaching the code of conduct for councillors.

During a media briefing on Thursday morning, Maile said Da Gama was suspended for three months without pay for failing to provide reasons why he had postponed the council on October 27 during the election of a new mayor.

He suspended Mathebe for failing to convene the council on two occasions during the ANC and EFF's debate on motions of no confidence against the DA-led administration.

"Da Gama and Mathebe placed the narrow interests of their political party, the Democratic Alliance, ahead of those of the residents of the two municipalities when they deliberately acted in a manner that sought to subvert the unfolding of democratic processes in the council.

"Correctly so, the MEC exercised his responsibility as enshrined in the Constitution and various legislation to take decisive action against unbecoming behaviour by any elected public representative within the sphere of local government," the ANC statement read.

The provincial party leaders believed had Maile not acted against the two councillors, it would have set a wrong precedent where council processes could be hijacked with impunity without any adverse consequences.

The DA has since released its own statement, threatening to take the matter to court if Maile does not retract his statement.

In its statement, DA leader John Steenhuisen called out the ANC for only acting when it came to the DA and failing to reprimand its own councillors.

"The ANC's selective application of the law, applied only to DA councillors, shows its transparent hypocrisy and emphasises that it does not care for residents, but rather for its own narrow interests to attain power at all costs," Steenhuisen said.

Source: News24

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