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Tshwane coalition ‘stable’ despite multi-billion energy deal spat, says ActionSA

"We don’t have a coalition problem, we have a problem with Randall Williams."

ActionSA said their coalition with the DA in Tshwane was “stable” – despite a spat over a R48.6-billion investment offer by a private Australian company to revamp two metro-owned power substations.

“We don’t have a coalition problem, we have a problem with mayor Randall Williams,” ActionSA Gauteng leader Bongani Baloyi told a media briefing on Thursday.

“We raised legitimate concerns with our coalition partners that the proposal for an unsolicited bid, in this regard, was riddled with questions of legality,” Baloyi said.

“These were, however, not addressed.”

He said his party was not against solutions to load-shedding, “our issue is not with the vision but with the process”.

This week, the coalition partners were at loggerheads about the unsolicited proposal to refurbish, finance, operate and maintain the Pretoria West and Rooiwal power stations by a private energy service company, Kratos Energy.

Williams was accused of bullying officials to approve the bid despite concerns about the deal’s possibly flawed supply chain management (SCM) processes.

“This flawed process runs the risk of undermining the entire endeavour.” Baloyi said.

“[It could] commit the metro to a long-term deal that will not produce results. [It] will be challenged in court and will bring problems – not electricity – to Tshwane residents.”

ActionSA chairperson Michael Beaumont said they will decide on their stance about Williams’ future as opposition parties have threatened to table a vote of no confidence against the mayor.

Beaumont said the party’s decision about Williams will be communicated to the coalition government.

The DA has defended Williams and said it was disappointed by ActionSA.

The party said the deal would make Tshwane independent of Eskom and load-shedding.

“[Herman] Mashaba’s ego threatens the future of Tshwane, service delivery and over 30 000 new jobs,” a DA statement read.

“We call on ActionSA to reconsider its decision.”

“[The party should] use the public participation process to raise concerns, which their members of the mayoral committee did not raise when the lease proposal was initially referred to the municipal council for a decision.”

Williams has denied wrongdoing or unlawful interference in SCM processes and said the Kratos offer was a good investment for the metro.

“It is simply an investment proposal that the metro received to lease the City’s land, which we intended to take for public participation.”

WATCH: ActionSA briefing

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