Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga accused the ANC of acting out of desperation and putting “no thought whatsoever” into the latest move in their “political game” to interdict their failed motion of no confidence against him.
Speaking outside the Pretoria Central Police station yesterday, Msimanga visited the station to file an answering affidavit in response to an urgent court application by the ANC’s leader, Kgosi Maepa.
The capital’s opposition party filed an urgent application in the High Court in Pretoria earlier this month, seeking to have speaker Katlego Mathebe’s denial of a secret ballot in last month’s motion of no confidence voided.
In their court papers, Maepa stated Mathebe’s refusal was “improper exercise of the discretion afforded to her”.
He also highlighted the council meeting where Msimanga was meant to be unseated started 40 minutes late. This contravened council rules that state a council meeting should be postponed should it fail to start within 20 minutes.
The party’s case had several loopholes and would go “nowhere”, said Msimanga.
“This is a political game that is being played. No thought has gone into this whatsoever. This is an attempt to derail us from what needs to be done,” the mayor said.
The ANC had hoped a secret ballot vote would attract those in the DA’s “black caucus” to “vote with their conscience” to oust Msimanga. The party had elected Maepa as mayoral candidate should their motion succeed.
But that was shattered by Mathebe, who referred to the Constitutional Court’s findings on a similar case between the UDM and National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete, which ruled the discretion for a secret ballot laid with the speaker.
This prompted the party to go to the court – but Maepa rather seemed desperate to run the city, Msimanga said.
“If the ANC wishes to bring a motion against me, they are more than welcome to do so in the time prescribed by the rules of council because the fact is that there are no grounds for urgency in this regard.
“The truth is that Maepa’s court application, in so far as it pertains to me, demonstrates the desperation with which he wants to be the mayor, despite a motion sponsored by him failing in council.”