Randall Williams aims to uplift Tshwane

Randall Williams gets the nod as Tshwane's mayoral candidate.
Randall Williams gets the nod as Tshwane's mayoral candidate.

DA Tshwane mayoral candidate Randall Williams says he was taken by surprise when his party nominated him to succeed outgoing mayor Stevens Mokgalapa.

Williams, a former MMC for economic development, believes he can help restore the battered image of the DA in Tshwane.

He told Sowetan that he was ready to convince the capital city residents to give the party another chance in next year's local government polls.

Mokgalapa is set to hand over the mayoral chain on Thursday after he resigned following the leaking of an audio clip in discussion with his former MMC for roads and transport Sheila Senkubuge.

The city's council will on Thursday officially accept Mokgalapa's resignation and elect a new mayor.

Should Williams get elected as mayor, he will have just over a year to convince Tshwane residents to return the DA to power next year.

"I don't have a long time if I should become a mayor. I only have about a year and five months to the next elections, so what I need to do is to make a huge difference in a very short period of time.

"That means I need to prioritise services in the City of Tshwane and for me I will be looking at the core responsibilities of local government," Williams said. "The issues are basic service delivery... like fixing potholes, fixing streetlights, cutting grass, maintaining infrastructure ... so that is what I'm going to concentrate on, the core responsibility of local government."

Williams was born on the Cape Flats in Western Cape. He is a qualified attorney who first became involved in politics while he was still at school.

He initially challenged Mokgalapa for the mayoral position after the resignation of Solly Msimanga. He went back to practicing law as a legal counsellor until he was recently announced as DA's candidate.

During his tenure as MMC in 2016, Williams had to drop out of his doctoral legal studies due to his busy schedule.

He said service delivery had suffered greatly under Mokgalapa and Msimanga because of the instability that had befallen the city since the controversial GladAfrica scandal.

But he believes that he can bring stability by involving all political parties in the delivery of services. "I believe in co-operative governance because I believe it is not only the role of the governing party to deliver services. It is council's responsibility to deliver services and not just one party.

"The ANC and the EFF also sit in council, so it's everybody's responsibility. You must be aware that in the City of Tshwane most of the ward councillors are ANC councillors, they have about twice the amount the DA has and ward councillors are the face of service delivery.

"So it's definitely in their interest that there should be co-operative governance."

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