Let’s move Nelson Mandela Bay forward again

Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Image: Brian Witbooi

In 2017, Crispian Olver released a book called How to Steal a City.

It gave an insider’s view of how individuals in the ANC used municipal mechanisms to not only enrich themselves but also to fund their election campaign leading up to the 2016 elections.

The silver lining for most residents of Nelson Mandela Bay was that the revelations in his book could be read in hindsight.

The book was released after the ANC failed to win a majority in Nelson Mandela Bay and by then a DA led coalition was leading the charge and making a noticeable positive difference in the metro.

Service delivery improved dramatically, 100% of grant funding was being spent which led to increased allocations from National Treasury.

Service delivery was taking place across the city with some remarking that the city looked like a construction site.

We were moving forward. People were filled with hope about the future of the metro.

The South African Customer Satisfaction Index confirmed this as the metro moved from the second least trusted metro to the second most trusted metro in the country, the most trusted metro was the DA run City of Cape Town.

Fast forward to 2020 and the metro is on the brink of collapse with the threat of administration looming.

The metro now faces the possibility of losing R750m  in grant funding which will cripple service delivery for years to come.

The obvious question you will be asking is how did this happen?

How did Nelson Mandela Bay regress so quickly following the two years of good governance under the DA led coalition?

Well since the end of 2018 the metro has been back in the hands of the ANC’s coalition of corruption.

This happened through the backdoor dealings of the ANC making promises to political parties which were inevitably broken.

EFF leader Julius Malema also had a hand in removing former mayor Athol Trollip and the DA coalition, you may recall his commitment to “slit the throat of whiteness” in reference to Trollip’s mayorship.

The most concerning part, however, is that the 2020 version of the ANC is being led unofficially by Andile Lungisa.

Yes, this is the same Andile Lungisa that was found guilty of assault after breaking a glass jug over a fellow councilors head during a heated council meeting.

He has since been promoted to member of the mayoral  committee  for infrastructure and engineering  and is for all intents and purposes the de facto mayor.

In 2016, Nelson Mandela Bay was saved from the brink of collapse by the DA and its coalition partners.

This team effected a rapid turnaround in service delivery and the finances of the municipality.

Today, just two years since Trollip was unceremoniously removed from office, many of the municipal departments are either not functioning or have been captured to do the bidding of the ANC’s coalition of corruption.

The Mandela Bay Development Agency has now fallen prey to this as yet another unlawful decision is taken by our illegal acting mayor.

On Monday, interim executive mayor Thsonono Buyeye   notified the board of the  Mandela Bay Development Agency (MBDA), that their services would no longer be needed and that their tenure was hereby terminated.

This is a blatant play by the coalition of corruption to fill the new board with cadres of this coalition so that the board can do its bidding.

Buyeye, clearly acted beyond his authority as this decision can only legally be made by a decision of council.

This means that the mayor is mandated by council on whether or not to terminate the board or to appoint new board members.

Council has not given him this instruction and thus he is working outside of his mandated powers.

It is plain for all to see that Nelson Mandela Bay is moving backwards at a rapid rate.

It is for this reason that now more than ever we, the residents,  need to stand up and be counted.

We need to fight to remove this criminal syndicate from power in our city and restore good governance in our municipality and service delivery on our streets.

The DA is fighting and will continue to fight to rid our city of corruption so that we can move Nelson Mandela Bay forward again.

Renaldo Gouws, Ward 2 councillor and DA spokesperson for economic development, tourism and agriculture

 

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