Legal heavyweights to face-off in Nelson Mandela Bay mayor battle

Legal heavyweights senior advocates Dali Mpofu and Tembeka Ngcukaitobi will be leading the charge for the newly elected coalition against the DA over the positions of mayor and speaker of council in the Nelson Mandela Bay, Netwerk24 has learnt from a well-placed source.

According to the source, Ngcukaitobi will be arguing for the EFF while Mpofu will represent several of the other respondents.

The DA is requesting the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth to urgently hear its case against the recent ousting of former mayor Athol Trollip by the new coalition.

The High Court will hear why the matter should be heard urgently from the DA's legal team, which the source said also consists of some of the country's legal heavyweights.

The coalition consisting of the UDM, EFF and ANC voted Trollip and former speaker Jonathan Lawack out of their positions together with the mayoral committee on September 27.

The UDM's Mongameli Bobani, who has had a volatile relationship with Trollip, was elected as the new mayor.

Trollip 'running city in exile'

Bobani, previously deputy mayor, was ousted by Trollip last year.

During a press briefing on Wednesday to announce DA provincial leader Nqaba Bhanga as the party's candidate for premier in the Eastern Cape, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said he was certain that the party would leave court victorious.

Bhanga then added that Trollip had not abandoned his role as mayor. He said that Trollip was in Motherwell on Tuesday assisting communities that had suffered the effects of heavy rainfall this week.

"Trollip is running the city in exile. We are law-abiding citizens, we don't want to fight over Ironman because the people of the city are more important."

The city hosted its first Ironman race this weekend, an event that was championed by Trollip during his time as mayor.

"Our day in court is going to come. We are going to win this case. We are going to expose this coup," said Bhanga.

Mpofu and Ngcukaitobi could not be reached for comment.