Mayor Athol Trollip had difficulty getting through to residents at two of the three Integrated Development Plan (IDP) and budget meetings last week, which saw some residents storm out as a result.
The drama unfolded on Tuesday when Walmer township residents at Walmer High School called for the meeting to be postponed, saying they were still in mourning for their councillor, Nceba Dywili, who was shot dead in July shortly before the local government elections.
Meanwhile, on Thursday at the Nangoza Jebe Hall in New Brighton, a ward councillor proceeded with the meeting an hour before the set time of 6pm.
The IDP and budget meetings are a platform for the new administration to outline its plans, and will run over five weeks.
A resident, who asked not to be named, said Ward 16 councillor Xola Sabani had addressed a packed Nangoza Jebe Hall and started with the programme without the mayor.
The resident said Trollip, flanked by his mayoral committee, arrived at the venue to a meeting already in session.
“Nqaba Bhanga [human settlements political head] grabbed the microphone from Sabane,” the resident said.
He then left with almost all the people, but we remained because we have pressing matters to discuss with the mayor.”
When the New Brighton meeting eventually started with only about 150 residents from Zwide, Kwazakhele and Soweto-on-Sea, the issues of economic development, unemployment, health care and skills development, refuse collection, education and housing took centre stage.
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