Clive Ndou
Politics editor
3 minute read
10 Nov 2021
06:45

ANC panel to grill Msunduzi’s mayoral candidates

Clive Ndou

Msunduzi Mayor Mzimkhulu Thebolla will this week be grilled by an ANC panel assessing his fitness to return to office following his two-year stint as the council’s boss.

Msunduzi Mayor Mzimkhulu Thebolla will this week be grilled by an ANC panel assessing his fitness to return to office following his two-year stint as the council’s boss.

Thebolla, who will be interviewed by a panel assembled by the ANC national leadership, is part of the three candidates whose names were submitted to the ruling party’s provincial leadership by the organisation’s Moses Mabhida regional task team (RTT) last week.

“Unlike in previous local government elections, the PEC has little say on who becomes mayor of any of the municipalities controlled by the ANC in the province. [We] receive the names from the regional leadership and then pass them over to national.”
ANC provincial executive committee (PEC) member

Former ANC Youth League (ANCYL) leader Mxolisi Mkhize and ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) regional secretary Zanele Ngcobo are also being considered for the Msunduzi mayoral position.

An ANC provincial executive committee (PEC) member confirmed to The Witness that the three names have been submitted to the ruling party’s interview panel. “Unlike in previous local government elections, the PEC has little say on who becomes mayor of any of the municipalities controlled by the ANC in the province.

“[We] receive the names from the regional leadership and then pass them over to national,” the source said.

The ANC national leadership’s decision to interview mayoral candidates before they were appointed has already caused some ructions within the region.

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On Saturday disgruntled ANC members, calling for the mayoral interviews to be put on hold, marched to the ANC regional offices in Pietermaritzburg.

ANC Msunduzi ward 13 chairperson Vincent Myeni said despite assurances by the party leadership that the council candidate nomination issue would be prioritised after the municipal elections, the organisation’s top brass resolved to prioritise the appointment of mayors instead. He said they were told on Friday that leaders were sitting to discuss the mayoral candidate issue.

“It is disturbing to learn that they’ve already begun with that process while they haven’t resolved our issues which they are aware of,” he said.

“Previously there have been complaints that mayors were being imposed on councils and the residents of the respective municipalities. What these interviews do is to ensure only suitable people were deployed as mayors. That’s why we are surprised that there are some people who want to block the interview processes.”
ANC regional task team (RTT) co-ordinator, Mandla Zondi

However, ANC regional task team (RTT) co-ordinator Mandla Zondi said the interviewing of mayoral candidates did not mean that the grievances lodged by the disgruntled party members were being ignored. “The grievances are being looked into as we speak. Once all the grievances have been processed, the aggrieved members will then receive feedback on the objections they had lodged,” he said.

The ANC’s decision to interview the party’s mayoral candidates, Zondi said, was something that should be welcomed. “Previously there have been complaints that mayors were being imposed on councils and the residents of the respective municipalities. What these interviews do is to ensure only suitable people were deployed as mayors. That’s why we are surprised that there are some people who want to block the interview processes,” he said.

Meanwhile, there were rumours that disaffected ANC members were planning fresh protests in the region.