Ricochet News

Trollip more likely to survive motion after opposition alliance falls again

Aug 16, 2018
Trollip more likely to survive motion after opposition alliance falls again

Speculation is pointing to Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip, again surviving the latest bid to oust him after the opposition alliance crumbled.

Six opposition parties, the African National Congress (ANC), the United Democratic Movement (UDM), the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), the African Independent Congress (AIC), the United Front (UF) and the Patriotic Alliance (PA) want Trollip and the entire Democratic Alliance (DA)-led coalition removed from office.

The opposition parties have a combined 61 seats in the 120-seat Council against the DA-led coalition's 59 seats, which includes seats from the African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) and the Congress of the People (COPE).

However, the PA on Wednesday night decided not to vote against Trollip and the coalition, which would effectively bring voting to a stalemate.

In that scenario, Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Council Speaker, Jonathan Lawack, from the DA and who also faces a motion against him, will then have to cast the deciding vote – which will obviously secure the DA coalition’s win.

Fractures in the opposition alliance emerged last week after the EFF said that they do not support the PA’s Marlon Daniels becoming the next Mayor in the event of Trollip’s successful removal.

The EFF went to as far as calling the PA a party of “thugs” and “unrepentant fraudsters” and said it agrees Trollip must go, but it might end up withholding its six votes – handing the DA coalition the win.

"Our hatred for racism will not manipulate us to vote a party of unrepentant fraudsters. EFF will never give the city of Nelson Mandela Bay to thugs. If there is no worthy candidate from opposition benches, then the EFF will not participate," the EFF described.

Wednesday’s meeting was meant to try and salvage the situation.

Apparently all the other parties had agreed that Daniels will be the next Mayor while the EFF preferred former Deputy Executive Mayor, Mongameli Bobani, the Regional Chairperson of the UDM.

It had been agreed then that Bobani would become Daniels’ deputy should the motions succeed.

Ironically, it was Daniels, who set in motion the removal of Bobani as Deputy Mayor last year. The two later said that they had let by-gones be by-gones when they sought the removal of Trollip in November last year.

This year, they again found themselves on opposite sides as the PA struck a deal with the DA-led coalition, which saved Trollip after another motion of no confidence was brought against him by the EFF. Daniels subsequently became the new MMC for Roads and Transport.

Last week, the PA announced it would withdraw Daniels so as to save the opposition alliance, but then again reports emerged that the party had decided that Daniels remains Trollip’s replacement.

After Wednesdays meeting, PA leader, Gayton McKenzie, announced that the AIC, PA, UF and ANC couldn’t agree with the EFF and UDM about the senior positions in the metro.

“The PA shall therefore not support the motion, thereby making it a failure tomorrow.”

He said other parties wanted to know why Daniels had been withdrawn against the initial agreement and said that the meeting ended with the EFF saying that they can never vote with the PA.