'We'll collapse as a country if we continue at this rate': Herman Mashaba

Outgoing Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has plans which include launching an online platform 'to save SA'.
Outgoing Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has plans which include launching an online platform 'to save SA'.
Image: Simphiwe Nkwali

Outgoing Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba plans to relax on an island before he embarks on his big plans, which could see him join another political party.   

Mashaba was speaking on the 702 breakfast show with Bongani Bingwa on Tuesday. 

He was one of the top leaders in the Democratic Alliance (DA) to resign and withdraw his membership from the embattled party last month after the appointment of Hellen Zille as the party's federal council chairperson. 

The party’s leader, Mmusi Maimane, also resigned and recently announced he would start a new political party.

Mashaba was asked if he intended to join Maimane’s party, but was reluctant to say.

“ I spoke to Mmusi yesterday, after few attempts to get hold of him. Unfortunately he lives in Cape Town. I said: 'Mmusi, I can’t talk to you over the phone. Let us discuss, let’s have couple of hours to discuss.' He said he’ll let me know,” he told 702.

Mashaba served as mayor for three years. 

Highlighting his biggest achievements during his three-year tenure, Mashaba said he was proud to have left the city in good financial standing. 

 “I am leaving the city with the best financial position, confirmed by the National Treasury two weeks ago, and by Moody’s in terms of the improvement in our financial position,” he said.  

He expressed joy about the in-sourcing of thousands of workers and the recruitment of police officers.

“We’ve in-sourced 7,000 families who were paid R2,000 or so a month. Today their salaries have more than doubled. They are on pensions, they are getting payslips. We’ve recruited more than 1,500 police officers, and more than 1,000 of them graduated yesterday,” he said.

Investment attraction, fighting corruption and the rehabilitation of the M2 bridge in Johannesburg were among his proudest achievements.

“We’ve attracted more than R32bn of construction projects, something that has not happened [before] in Johannesburg. We have dealt with some of the dangerous bridges which would have  killed our people,” he said.  

Asked what he intended to do next, he said he would go on a holiday and planned to launch a platform to save the country. 

“In few day's time I’ll be lying somewhere on an island reading books, doing things I would have not been able to do in the past four years, come back in the new year. What I’ve decided to do to contribute to my country’s future, to save South Africa, is to sponsor an online platform where I can get civil society to discuss our deep-rooted problems because we’re going to collapse as country if we continue at this rate,” he said.

Mashaba was adamant he had built a solid foundation. 

"If we continue with public servants who want to serve society, I strongly believe the foundation I’ve laid will be very difficult for anyone to break."

Mashaba is expected to launch his "massive" platform in December.   

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