- The vote of no confidence in the Johannesburg mayor will be heard on Thursday.
- The 9th ordinary sitting of the council runs over two days and began on Wednesday.
- On the agenda was the vote on the R2 billion short-term loan, and the motions to oust the mayor.
Joburg residents will have to wait until Thursday to hear if they have a new mayor.
The ninth ordinary sitting of the council, which began on Wednesday, runs over two days.
There were two big items on the agenda: The council vote on the proposed R2 billion short-term loan and the motions of no confidence in Mayor Mpho Phalatse.
The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) loan did not pass on Wednesday.
The council managed to get through most of the agenda and will continue with the programme on Thursday, starting early with the first motion of no confidence in Phalatse.
The first motion was proposed by Margaret Arnolds of the AIC and was seconded by Thapelo Amad of Al Jama-ah.
The second motion of no confidence in the mayor was proposed by Lubabalo Magwentshu of ATM, and seconded by PAC councillor Tebogo Nkokou.
For most of the day, the corridor talk was that both motions would be scrapped because the EFF would not vote with the ANC.
This was after the decision by EFF leader Julius Malema who, two weeks ago, said the party would vote in defence of the DA in Johannesburg until the ANC agreed to back the EFF in Ekurhuleni.
The decision was taken because the ANC and EFF disagreed on who should govern in Ekurhuleni after the DA mayor, Tania Campbell, was axed in a motion of no confidence last month.
Campbell was reinstated following a vote in the council because of this disagreement between the EFF and the ANC.
By late afternoon, the opposition parties in the Johannesburg council seemed to be caucusing with each other.
If the EFF decides to vote with ANC, the opposition parties will have the majority vote, and Phalatse will likely be axed.
Councillors speculate that if the opposition parties win, they may put a minority party leader as mayor to make up for what happened in Ekurhuleni.
Meanwhile, Finance MMC Julie Suddaby said she was disappointed that the council had rejected the R2 billion loan.
“The no vote for a second time disappointed me. It is shortsighted, especially since the MPG [Market Practitioners Group] had clearly shown it was a normal business decision to assist the city’s cash flow at this time.
“This action confirms that the ANC and the minority party coalition don’t have the residents and businesses of Joburg at the centre of their decision-making. It is not the residents of the city that the opposition seats served in council today.”
A total of 137 councillors rejected the application and 130 councillors voted in favour.
Meanwhile Sinovuyo Mpakama, the City of Johannesburg’s acting group CFO, said: “We are aware that there is huge concern about salaries, and I would like to assure the staff that salaries for November and December are covered despite the no vote.”