COPE at odds over Bay council seat

Regional, national spokesmen clash over who will be party’s representative

Who will occupy COPE’s lone seat in the Nelson Mandela Bay council? The party’s regional and national leaders are at odds over who should represent COPE in the metro council over the next five years.

While COPE’s Bay regional spokesman, Thembelani Kondile, was adamant on Saturday that regional chairman Khwezi Ntshanyana would occupy the seat, national spokesman Dennis Bloem refuted this, saying Siyasanga Sijadu was their new PR councillor.

COPE suffered a devastating blow in the local government elections two weeks ago as it lost major support in the Bay.

Its number of seats in the council dropped from six to one.

Speaking from Numsa’s regional offices in Port Elizabeth on Saturday, Kondile said Ntshanyana was the mayoral candidate in the run-up to the elections and was thus obviously the party’s representative in the council.

He was speaking at a press conference called by smaller political parties in the Bay who have joined forces to form a coalition block.

“As COPE, we have Khwezi Ntshanyana as our mayoral candidate [who] was given to us by our organisation and our constituencies,” Kondile said.

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