Nelson Mandela Bay council meeting off to slow start

ADJOURNMENT REQUESTED: The Nelson Mandela Bay council chamber
ADJOURNMENT REQUESTED: The Nelson Mandela Bay council chamber

The much-anticipated Nelson Mandela Bay council meeting got off to a slow start on Monday, with council chief whip Bicks Ndoni requesting an adjournment to go over the letter from co-operative governance MEC Xolile Nqatha.

Last week, Nqatha gave the metro seven days to give reasons why provincial government should not intervene and institute Section 139 of the constitution.

Before the meeting started, mayor Mongameli Bobani said he was confident he would not be ousted as the opposition, while members of the coalition would debate a motion of no confidence against him.

“These motions will keep coming but I am going nowhere,” he said.

Council speaker Buyelwa Mafaya said she had requested the letter from the department of  Cogta, saying it would be tabled and discussed at the meeting.

Ndoni asked that council adjourn for 30 minutes so that a multiparty whippery could meet to discuss the letter.

Cope councillor Siyasanga Sijadu objected and said Ndoni had failed in his duties as chief whip to call such meetings.

“Speaker, I object to this because a multiparty whippery was meant to sit last week already but the chief whip failed to call the meetings.

“We can't sit here and discuss a document we were meant to discuss last week,” Sijadu said.

DA chief whip Kabelo Mogatosi said he had written to Ndoni six times requesting a whippery meeting, but Ndoni had failed to respond.

“Every councillor here has an agenda so I’m not sure why the chief whip is calling a meeting now when he’s failed to do so before.

“Before every council meeting, all party whips are supposed to sit but the chief whip has failed to call these meetings,” Mogatosi said.

Mafaya agreed with Ndoni and granted a 30-minute adjournment.

Meanwhile, outside the council chamber, the streets were cordoned off by the police.

Some councillors battled to enter the building as they were unable to produce proper identification.