South Africa: Joburg Mayor Whisked to Hospital Amid Council Meeting

The Johannesburg City Council Chamber building in 2018.

It does not rain but pours for City of Johannesburg Executive Mayor Kabelo Gwamanda, who was whisked away to hospital on Wednesday.

After weeks off from work without a clear explanation, the mayor delivered his State of the City address (Soca) on Tuesday and immediately dashed off without attending a scheduled press conference.

On Wednesday morning he arrived at the council to news that ActionSA had filed a motion of no confidence against him.

In the first of his four weeks in office, the mayor was accused of owning a burial society scheme that fleeced monies of poor people.

The mayor failed to address the allegations while opposition parties claimed to be in possession of more evidence of people who may have been defrauded by his scheme.

Before that, a CV of the mayor filed with the City of Johannesburg was exposed as reflecting he had no formal education. His party Al Jama-ah said Gwamanda dropped out of school after grade 10 but later returned to acquire a matric certificate.

Gwamanda's spokesperson Mlimandlela Ndamase told the media that the mayor fell ill even before delivering the Soca but went ahead despite medical advice not to do so.

Patriotic Alliance's Kenny Kunene, who is also the MMC for Transport, said Gwamanda was being treated for an allergy.

"The mayor had received medication, he drank the medication and thought he was better. That is why he went to council thinking that he would be able to sit throughout council and respond to the debate.

"However he got worse, he got swollen and that is why council had to be deferred because the chief whip felt that it would be inhumane to subject the mayor to sit there and respond when they could see that he was not okay," he told Newzroom Afrika.

Kunene said it was the council, not the mayor, who postponed the post-Soca debate.

Leader of ActionSA in Johannesburg Funzi Ngobeni said they were in talks with opposition parties including the DA to rebuild their coalition and support the call to remove Gwamanda from office.

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