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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist

WATCH: Chaos erupts in Joburg council meeting as EFF and ANC members storm speaker

The ANC and EFF opposed the attendance of the acting secretary of the Johannesburg council Madimetja Molekwa.

Chaos erupted until almost 2am during a City of Johannesburg council meeting after members of the African National Congress (ANC) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) stormed the speaker’s podium.

The Democratic Alliance’s (DA) Vasco Da Gama called the meeting on Wednesday to table among others, the re-advertisement of the city manager position and the ratification of the acting secretary of the council seat.

According to the Bongani Nkomo, the deputy DA caucus leader, the chaos erupted after the ANC and EFF opposed the attendance of the acting secretary of the council Madimetja Molekwa from the National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

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“The ANC and the EFF opposed it on the basis that he is not the legitimate person to be in that seat and insisted that they have Mr Andile Gobinca and until such a time that happens, there will be no council meeting,” said Nkomo.

Nkomo said it is ironic that the ANC and EFF opposed Molekwa’s attendance as both parties seconded him to the acting secretary of the council in May on a month-to-month basis effective from 1 June.

“Council at the time had another meeting on 22 and 23 June and they resolved that Mr Gobinca’s acting position be extended which is the gentleman the ANC and the EFF were insisting on having where we resolved that his acting period be extended until 9 September.

“And that’s basically to ensure that the seat would not be vacant until such a time that Mr Molekwa was available. So, we obviously tabled this item last night,” he said.

Nkomo says the ANC and EFF then stormed Da Gama’s podium.

“Through trying to control the meeting the speaker would try to suppress those that weren’t supposed to be talking and we have one of the EFF councillors on record saying ‘if you don’t allow me to talk, I will come remove you off that chair.’”

“He then got up followed by a number of other EFF members to go remove the speaker from his chair. Some of the DA councillors were injured and one was the lady that stood up to protect our colleague and blocked the EFF, trying to prevent them from getting to the speaker,” Nkomo added.

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In a statement, the ANC said the presence of Molekwa in the council chambers caused chaos, as the speaker of council failed to take charge of council business as usual.

“The stifling of debate and the impartial arrogant posture of the speaker of council towards a fair and open debate is what caused council to collapse.”

“As the ANC caucus we strongly condemn the actions by the DA-led administration that has acted in their own subjective interest and we therefore are considering taking the matter to the NCOP,” the party said.

Nkomo says Da Gama announced that the meeting could not continue under the disorderly circumstances and that a date and time would be set for another meeting.

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