The doors to the Buffalo City Metro (BCM) city council chambers have been legally prised open for Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) councillors‚ who may now enter garbed in their fire engine red overalls‚ hard hats and berets.
Last week‚ East London High Court Judge Selby Mbenenge ruled that they were not allowed to be removed from chambers because of their dress.
This will add a new dimension to the city council meetings as the EFF bring a noisy‚ robust style to opposition politics.
The EFF welcomed the ruling‚ which found that the removal of its councillors from the BCM council chambers was unconstitutional.
Mbenenge said instructions from both the municipality and the speaker of the council‚ Alfred Mtsi‚ to remove the EFF councillors contravened the Constitution and ordered Mtsi to pay costs.
At this stage‚ it seems that ratepayers and taxpayers will be footing Mtsi’s legal bill as he made the orders in his official capacity.
The EFF has only taken part in a full session of council once – the inaugural council meeting.
The party has battled long and hard to get its trademark red garb through many official doors‚ starting with a court order allowing it to take up its elected seats in the National Assembly.