Neelam Rahim – firstname.lastname@example.org
5 min read – 20:50 CAT
Nelson Mandela Bay again has a new mayor after Eugene Johnson was voted out last night, which is a significant loss for the ANC. The DA’s Retief Odendaal has been elected as the new mayor. This follows a deal reached by seven opposition parties in July to form a coalition in the metro and resolved to table the motion of no confidence. They are the DA, ACDP, African Independent Congress, Abantu Integrity Movement, FF Plus, PAC and UDM.
Speaking to Radio Islam International ActionSA’s Eastern Cape Provincial Chairperson, Athol Trollip, said it is tragic that Nelson Mandela Bay and the mayoralty of the municipality have become a revolving door over the last few years.
According to Athol, the change will do well for Nelson Mandela Bay. The coalition of corruption under the ANC leadership had not served the essence of the city’s interest well, and the service delivery collapsed.
Having served with Retief Odendaal as the Mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay, Athol said Odendaal handled the finances and has a firm grasp of how financial management works. He is also a qualified attorney.
Adding, “It’s going to be difficult. Coalitions are always difficult, and as South Africans come to grip with governing and coalition, they will need to learn to cooperate, collaborate and place aside personal egos. Retief will be able to do that.”
Strong coalitions are led by proper leaders who are prepared to set aside their egos and have a contractual agreement that, if broken, there will be consequences, and people will be replaced.
Athol said these are exciting times for South Africa and coming up for Nelson Mandela Bay.
Meanwhile, the greatest challenge for the city is ensuring reticulation, which brings the Gariep dam water to Port Elizabeth to reticulate across the city. Athol said they need to do better in dealing with leaks and prevent water loss which the current government has been unable to do.
He added that cleaning up the city, which is filthy. Most of the fleet belonging to the municipality is inoperable.
“The big challenege is to get the municipality back on track to the things the municipality is supposed to do is to do them with proper procurement, no theft, and no tenderpreneurs as they get the job but don’t do the work.”
Listen below to the interview with Mufti Yusuf Moosagie and ActionSA’s Athol Trollip on Radio Islam’s podcast.