Ricochet News

WATCH VIDEO: Bobani accuses Mayor Trollip of running the Bay 'like a farm'

By Afikile Lugunya - Dec 12, 2017
WATCH VIDEO: Bobani accuses Mayor Trollip of running the Bay 'like a farm'

Addressing the media, former Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Deputy Executive Mayor, Mongameli Bobani, said that a decision by the Democratic Alliance (DA) led coalition administration to abolish the position of Deputy Mayor, which had remained vacant since his sacking in August, was further evidence of the coalition's failure to properly govern the Bay.

After failing to clinch an outright victory in the 2016 Local Government Elections, the DA was forced to enter into coalition agreements with several smaller parties, including Bobani's United Democratic Movement (UDM), in order ensure the defeated African National Congress (ANC) is kept at bay.

However, tensions between Bobani and Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip, became public when Bobani was fired from the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Public Health portfolio.

Bobani was subsequently voted out as Deputy Executive Mayor  and the UDM tried, unsucessfully, to have him reinstated through the courts.

At the end of November, Trollip and Council Speaker, Jonathan Lawack, survived motions of no confidence brought against them by the Patriotic Alliance and UDM.

Ahead of that Council Meeting, the DA had also indicated that it would submit a motion to have the position of Deputy Mayor, which has been vacant since Bobani's ouster, be abolished.

It won that motion with 65 votes to 54 that wanted the position to remain.

'Abolishing the position was done illegally'

On Monday, Bobani, who remains a Councillor in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, and seemingly still harbours a belief that the Courts will reverse his sacking as Deputy Mayor, claimed that legislations was not followed in abolishing the position.

“You cannot just sleep today and wake up tomorrow and decide that you will shut down the organogram - it doesn’t work like that because there are certain legislations that you have to follow," Bobani said.

“With that particular one he is making it worse, because as soon as the court decides that I must go back to my position then I will go. Instead of them keeping their word in front of the Judge, they do another thing, by shutting down the office illegally and without following other processes.

“We as the UDM would like the court to decide on this particular matter."

He said that the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Council should have waited for the Courts to sort out the matter of sacking first before debating the abolishment of that position.

Bobani accused the Mayor of taking unilateral decisions in the municipality and "running it like a farm".

Explaining the chaos often witnessed at the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Council Meetings, Bobani blamed the Speaker, Cllr Lawack.

“We must not fight each other, but the Speaker of the Council only listens to Trollip, even if anything is wrong that Speaker will not be able to run that council properly,” he described, adding that it was Lawack, who allowed him to be removed "illegally" from the Deputy Mayor position.

“We have a speaker, who has allowed illegal actions inside the Council. Up until now, we had a right speaker; I cannot say that things will be normal in the Council; things remain abnormal because of the Speaker of the council.

“The UDM wants nothing, but to abide by the law even if it was not Bobani, the UDM would still be fighting for things to be right inside the council."