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By Siphumelele Khumalo


New Joburg mayor Thapelo Amad admits that the council has failed people

'We have to engage our communities so we can respond better to their needs.'

Newly elected City of Johannesburg mayor Al Jama-ah councillor Thapelo Amad has admitted that the council has failed citizens and has vowed to change that.

He was elected the mayor of the metro on Friday, during the second day of the 13th extraordinary council meeting.

This follows the ouster of the Democratic Alliance‘s (DA) Mpho Phalatse from office on Thursday through a motion of no confidence.

Society is damaged

Amad, who was addressing the sitting, said: “For today we are reminded that outside political formation our communities remain in a state of joblessness, hopelessness, anger, resentment and hatred for as a councillor, we have neglected them for too long while they watch with disappointment, as we fight over political control of the city.”

He added that the day of his appointment should be marked as one that coalition partners and opposition parties seek to achieve unity in purpose.

“Today in acceptance of this responsibility of being a city mayor, I bring my soul to this just cause of uniting this council and honouring our oath and promises to communities in Johannesburg.”

Key priorities

“Today I humbly request that you all hold our hand as we purposefully unite to address the pressing challenges bedevilling our City we must accept that as this administration, we will not be able to achieve much if we do not work with broader society,” said Amad.  

He said the priorities of the administration included service delivery, finances of the City, administration reform, combatting fraud and corruption and community participation.

Basic services will be extended

“We must be equally mindful to the cry of our people, who in all honesty yearn for basic services. This will be the first priority of this administration.  We will make sure that the most basic services are extended to all corners of the City.”

“The second priority has be fixing the City’s finances. Again, we call of citizens of the beautiful City to partake to the rebuild of the City. The minimum we ask of you, is to pay for what you have consumed, if you cannot afford, there are other systems put in place. Please utilise them,” he said.

Be responsive of people’s needs

Ahmad said it was important for the administration to be professionalised to ensure that it is responsive to the needs of its people, as opposed to thinking that it knows best.

“The fourth priority is fighting fraud and corruption. This is another pandemic that is crippling our society. We must all agree that it is our collective responsibility to fight this evil.”

“Finally, we will as this new administration, with immediate effective start having discussions to discuss a comprehensive strategy of ensuring citizens become involved in what we do. We have to engage our communities so we can respond better to their needs.”

READ MORE: Al Jama-ah’s Thapelo Amad elected Joburg mayor

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