eThekweni Mayor redeployed

THE ANC in KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday recalled Mxolisi Kaunda from his position as eThekwini mayor.

Kaunda had faced two motions of no confidence in the municipality, but survived both with his party’s backing.

In a statement, the ANC said Kaunda was being redeployed to Parliament’s National Council of Provinces (NCOP) as the party ushered “in a new era following the national and provincial elections; we are identifying key areas that require urgent focus”.

“We strongly believe that, with his experience, Mxolisi Kaunda has an important role to play in the NCOP.

“We extend our appreciation to him for his dedication during the most difficult period, such as the ravaging floods, the outbreak of Covid-19 and many other challenges.

“Equally, we thank him for serving the people of eThekwini with dedication,” the party said in a statement.

The party said as it started a new chapter, it was extending a hand of co-operation to all the people of eThekwini across all political lines.

“We need to pull together behind a common goal of making our city a liveable place.

“Leaders of different political parties are encouraged to play an oversight role to ensure that there is clean governance and speed in the delivery of services.”

The party said its view was that “real politics involving all political parties in the council should be about efforts to meet the needs of the people”.

 “Collectively, we must ensure that the new post-election change is felt positively by residents in informal settlements, townships, suburbs, business offices, industrial areas, and all corners of the city.

“To the people of eThekwini, we say this is your city. And you have a right to shape its socio-economic development trajectory. And more importantly, as a voter, it is within your right to determine the pace of service delivery that is due to you.”

IFP president Velenkosini Hlabisa, during a press conference on Wednesday, responded to Kaunda’s redeployment, saying they did not have anything to do with Kaunda being moved to the NCOP.

“We were unhappy with the state of the municipality,” Hlabisa said.

DA eThekwini caucus leader Thabani Mthethwa said they welcomed the news that Kaunda “has been fired”.

“(The news) is welcomed by every single resident of this municipality who has been forced to suffer under his incompetence and absence.

“This is the man who remained in denial about the true state of the city which suffers from debilitating water outages, electricity supply issues, failing infrastructure, non-service delivery, excessive billing, high crime levels which have chased away investors, deadly municipal protests, all while eThekwini drowns in billions of rand of debt,” Mthethwa said.

He said the party has been consistently calling for Kaunda’s removal and “welcomes the action that has been taken by his political party to finally remove him”.

“The DA is prepared to engage with other political parties that are serious about stabilising eThekwini, which includes tabling a credible plan to end water outages and invest in much-needed infrastructure.

“We will work with the incoming provincial government to ensure the municipality gets back on track to deliver quality services to every resident across the metro,” Mthethwa said.

Image (Nothing sharp, sharp. Mxolisi Kaunda, former eThekweni Mayor who has been redeployed by his organisation).

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