Ricochet News

DA Councillors Neville Higgins and Trevor Louw defy order to boycott NMB Council meeting

Sep 7, 2018
DA Councillors Neville Higgins and Trevor Louw defy order to boycott NMB Council meeting

There has been a dramatic start to the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality's first Council meeting since the ousting of the Democratic Alliance (DA) led coalition government last week.

While the DA and its coalition partners announced that they will boycott this Council meeting, which they labelled as 'illegitimate', two DA councillors showed up to everyone's surprise.

On Thursday, the DA said that it will boycott the meeting ahead of a court hearing in which it wants the election of the United Democratic Movement's (UDM), Mongameli Bobani, as the new Executive Mayor, be set aside and Athol Trollip be reinstated.

The DA's Councillor Trevor Preston Louw had a letter that was mysteriously handed in announcing his intention to resign from the party. 

Louw said that the letter was forcefully taken from him by DA supporters, who gathered outside the Council chambers.

He told Council he had no intentions of submitting it, but his bag was grabbed by the DA supporters.

Louw says this is how his shirt was torn earlier on.

He said that he is going to lay charges against the DA supporters, who assaulted him.

Another DA Councillor, Neville Higgins, also said that he was at council today to hand in his resignation as well.

Louw's letter was read after a Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality City Manager, Johann Mettler, said he received Louw's letter from the secretariate.

However, new Speaker, the African National Congress' (ANC) Buyelwa Mafaya, who replaced the DA's Jonathan Lawack last week Monday, responding to the DA's boycott said it is only the Speaker, who can adjourn Council meetings so Friday's meeting proceeded.

She, however, dismmissed Louw's letter saying that it is only valid if he is the one, who submitts it to Council. So, in the meantime, Mafaya said that Louw will remain a DA councillor until further notice. She did call for a probe into his assault allegations.

The resignations of the two Councillor is a major blow for the DA and its coalition partners after DA Councillor, Trevor Manyathi's actions at last Monday's Council meeting led to the ouster of the DA coalition.

More to follow...