'ANC mayor defies court'

THE future of 12 ANC councillors whom the Pretoria high court ordered must be reinstated in the Blouberg municipality in Limpopo, is uncertain.

Mayor Serite Sekgoloane is allegedly refusing to take them back.

The councillors, who served as proportional representatives and ward councillors, were dismissed from work and later the ANC late last year.

They were accused of disrupting council meetings.

The Pretoria high court had granted an order for the reinstatement of the councillors after ruling that their dismissal had been unlawful.

But Sowetan learnt yesterday that Sekgoloane had refused to let them resume their duties. He allegedly defied the court order and told the councillors they were no longer needed in the council.

One of the affected councillors said Sekgoloane told them the Independent Electoral Commission had removed their names from the councillors' list and that new councillors had already been inaugurated to take their seats in the council.

He said they were told the council could only pay the salaries of 36 councillors at a time due to the size and structure of the municipality.

"We told Sekgoloane to put everything in writing but he refused," he said.

Two other councillors, both from the Lepelle-Nkumpi municipality, were also told to stay at home until the matter was finalised.

It is understood that the ANC intends challenging the court's decision.

Lepelle-Nkumpi mayor Calvin Masoga said yesterday the ANC was responsible for deploying members to the council, so they were waiting for word from the organisation.

ANC provincial spokesperson Ishmael Kgetjepe said they would challenge the court order. He said they were not aware of Sekgoloane's action and would investigate.