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By Citizen Reporter

Journalist


City of Tshwane to get new council speaker after Katlego Mathebe resigns

Cope Tshwane regional chairperson Murunwa Makwarela has reportedly been tipped to take over the position of speaker.


The City of Tshwane is currently without a council speaker, following the resignation of Katlego Mathebe on Tuesday. 

Mathebe resigned to assume the role of Environment and Agriculture Management MMC, the city’s mayor Randall Williams said in a statement on Wednesday. 

Williams said her appointment means “all ten multiparty mayoral committee positions have now been filled”. 

Reports indicate the city will elect a new speaker on Thursday, but this has yet to be confirmed by Williams, who said council would convene to appoint a new speaker “soon”. 

Trading places? 

Pretoria Rekord reports Mathebe’s resignation was due to the Democratic Alliance (DA) trading her position with Congress of the People (Cope) Tshwane regional chairperson Murunwa Makwarela, as per coalition agreement talks last year. 

Makwarela has reportedly been tipped to take over the position of speaker from Mathebe, information that was confirmed by him to the publication on Wednesday. 

ALSO READ: ANC, EFF must follow the law to remove Tshwane speaker – DA

The environment and agriculture portfolio was previously headed by the DA’s Dana Wannenburg. 

“On behalf of the Tshwane metro, I would like to thank Alderman Mathebe for her sterling work during her tenure as speaker of council. She presided over council meetings in a commendable manner during some of the most challenging political periods in the metro,” Williams said.

ALSO READ: Tshwane likely to have another DA-led coalition as parties try to block ANC-EFF union

Cope and Tshwane 

Cope holds one seat in the Tshwane council. Other political parties forming part of the city’s multi-party mayoral committee agreement include the Freedom Front Plus and ActionSA.

Mathebe had been the City of Tshwane council speaker since 2016, and was re-elected unopposed on November 23 last year.

Mathebe’s tenure as council speaker was during what political analysts describe as “chaotic years”. 

Before the Tshwane council was dissolved in March 2020 by the provincial government, there were disagreements between Mathebe, EFF and ANC councillors, who on several occasions put a motion of no confidence against her. 

The disagreements, due to political tensions between the DA, ANC and EFF, started in late 2019 and continued into 2020.

The EFF and ANC ward councillors walked out of council meetings several times, after refusing to sit in meetings presided over by Mathebe. 

Since October 2020, however, when council resumed, matters appeared to have been relatively calm.

NOW READ: ActionSA-DA pact mooted in attempt to keep ANC out of power in Tshwane and Joburg

Parts of this article first appeared on Caxton publication Pretoria Rekord’s website, by Sinesipho Schrieber. Read the original article here.