ANC mayor gets the boot
THE troubled marriage between the ANC and National Freedom Party in KwaZulu-Natal has crumbled.
Yesterday NFP councillors voted with the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) and Democratic Alliance (DA) to oust uMtshezi municipality ANC mayor Bongani Dlamini.
The ANC and NFP signed a coalition agreement to work together in 18 municipalities in the province after last year's local government elections.
"It's not true that the NFP planned to oust Dlamini as the mayor. It was the ANC that raised a motion that they no longer trusted deputy mayor and our member Bhekithemba Dlamini. They wanted to replace him with their own member," NFP provincial chairman Vusi Khoza said yesterday.
"But they miscounted because during the council meeting opposition parties voted together and ousted ANC mayor Bongani Dlamini."
The ANC has seven councillors, while the NFP has three, IFP four and DA one.
After the election, Bhekithemba Dlamini was voted in as mayor.
The IFP's Ntokozo Zuma and Mthembeni Majola were elected as speaker and deputy mayor, respectively.
Bongani Dlamini said the meeting had been illegal.
"The councillors that sat in the meeting did not form a quorum because they were eight all together," he said.
"And if they wanted to call a legitimate meeting, there should have been 50 plus one, which in this case is nine councillors.
"It shocked us [the ANC] that while we mourn the death of our councillor they came together and held a meeting to remove me," Dlamini said.
NFP councillor Sizwe Mchunu said the decision was about showing the ANC they were not as "powerful in the marriage as they think".
"For far too long we have had to persevere despite humiliation from the ANC," Mchunu said.
"They acted as if they are superior in the pact. They did as they wished in the municipality, including firing all NFP members and replacing them with ANC members.
"While we respected the coalition we could no longer take this attitude."