Numbers don't lie: Msimanga could be axed as mayor if EFF vote with ANC in motion of no confidence
According to the maths, if the EFF and the ANC in Tshwane vote together on Thursday's motion of no confidence against Tshwane Mayor Solly Msimanga, the DA will lose its second metro this week.
Msimanga conceded this during a press briefing on Tuesday where he sought to clarify the DA's position on a number of matters gripping the capital city.
However, Msimanga added that there were two motions of no confidence, one by the ANC and one by the EFF and both parties would have to decide which motion they would vote for to successfully oust him.
He said that the question would then lead to who would be the candidate to replace him as mayor. Would the ANC put up a candidate? Would the EFF put up a candidate? Or would a third party have a candidate that could be elected as mayor, as had happened in Nelson Mandela Bay on Monday?
The DA's Athol Trollip was removed as mayor of the Nelson Mandela metro without a single DA councillor present in the chamber and was replaced by the UDM's Mongameli Bobani. Trollip's sacking meant that the ANC, EFF and UDM voted in favour of the motion of no confidence in him.
The ANC's motion of no confidence in Msimanga was the result of a tender fraud scandal allegedly involving city manager Moeketsi Mosola and engineering consultancy firm GladAfrica. The R12bn tender was for the management of infrastructure projects.
Motion a sign of 'aversion to clean and accountable governance'
The EFF has said its motion relates to Msimanga disregarding consultation with other parties in the crucial running of the City and allowing "white racists who are exposed for taking jobs without the necessary qualifications to retaliate and punish the black city manager for exposing them".
The party has inferred that Mosola, against whom Msimanga has asked council to issue a notice of intention to suspend, is being punished for ousting former Tshwane chief of staff Marietha Aucamp, who did not have the proper qualifications for the position.
Msimanga said that the motions of no confidence in him were inexplicable because his actions have shown that any allegations of wrongdoing or corruption have been taken seriously and are investigated.
The mayor questioned the intentions of the DA's coalition partner, the EFF, asking why the party was now colluding with the ANC to remove him as mayor when he had shown commitment to clean governance and the highest levels of accountability and transparency.
"This aversion to clean and accountable governance was on display in NMB (Nelson Mandela Bay) yesterday, where the EFF colluded with the ANC, to take power from the DA-led coalition, and only strengthens my call to have the matter urgently independently investigated," Msimanga said.
"If the EFF chooses to collude with the ANC in the motion of no confidence it will be a clear demonstration that they support and stand by corruption and wrongdoing.
ANC 'sure of outright majority'
"While the ANC and EFF attempt to destabilise legitimate and democratically established governments in our metros we will continue to do the work of bringing tangible change to the people of Tshwane," he said.
"I stand undeterred by the motion of no confidence, I will face it as I have faced other challenges in the past. I will uncover wrongdoing and take action without fear or favour, a practice which is alien to the ANC which has built itself on graft and corruption."
In another press briefing held in Tshwane on Tuesday, the ANC's newly elected regional chairperson Kgosi Maepa said he was confident that come Thursday, Msimanga would no longer be the mayor of Tshwane.
"We have lobbied sufficiently and we are sure of outright majority, even people from the DA will be voting [with the ANC] on this motion," said Maepa.
He added that political parties should use their conscience to vote out Msimanga, whom he accused of running a "corrupt city".
"We are asking not only the EFF but also the black caucus of the DA who themselves are unhappy about Msimanga who is running the City on behalf of the white caucus."
EFF, ANC 'colluding to loot'
Maepa said the vote would be by secret ballot.
He also answered Msimanga's questions, saying that the ANC would vote on the EFF motion if it came up first and that he would stand as a candidate for mayor if the motion was successful.
He added that 214 councillors make up the Tshwane council: 93 belonging to the DA, 89 to the ANC and 24 to the EFF. For Msimanga to be axed, there needed to be a 51% vote for him to go.
Maepa said the motion was to make sure that the DA is not allowed to continue with corruption in Tshwane as the City was collapsing under the guidance of Msimanga.
Msimanga, however, rubbished claims that he was at the centre of any scandal and said that he launched investigations and had taken action where wrongdoing had been found.
"It is clear that the ANC and the EFF are currently only focused on one thing – colluding to ensure that together they can loot and undermine the City, and to protect senior office bearers from investigation for possible wrongdoing," said Msimanga.
"The people of Tshwane must be under no illusion – this is not about good governance, it is about these parties' naked pursuit of power and access to resources and patronage.
"The DA will not be deterred in governing to the highest possible standards and remains steadfast in its commitment to rooting out corruption and upholding the highest possible standard of governance."