Johannesburg – DA leader John Steenhuisen has warned the support that the party’s mayoral candidates received in Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni from the EFF and ActionSA comes with no strings attached.
Steenhuisen said his party did not make concessions to the EFF and ActionSA and would not do so, despite the two organizations having voted DA mayors in both metros.
Speaking just hours after the party’s Dr. Mpho Phalatse and Tania Campbell were voted Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni mayors respectively, Steenhuisen said he would not allow the red berets and Mashaba’s party to hold a gun to their head in the governments.
“Yesterday’s developments in the votes for mayor and speaker in both Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni Metros came as a surprise to everyone, including us at the DA. We didn’t ask for help from the EFF to lead these governments, and we did not expect to leave these meetings with two new DA mayors, and both these metros’ first-ever female mayors,” he said.
“I also want to make it clear that we did not solicit the support of the EFF – or Action SA, for that matter – for our candidates in these metros. There was no deal made with them, and there is no quid pro quo for supporting our candidates. All we offer these parties is the opportunity to be on the right side of history,” he said.
Steenhuisen further said his party was under no illusion about the stability of the governments, adding it was clear that EFF voted against the ANC more than they voted for the DA.
The DA would make it known when other parties thwart budgets and bylaws.
The party would need the support of other parties such as the EFF to pass a budget.
“If we cannot pass these crucial votes, we will be vocal about which parties obstructed or frustrated our efforts at good governance,’ he said, adding his party would work with other organizations to form a coalition that would not depend on the EFF.
The unseating of the ANC in Tshwane and Johannesburg came at an opportune time, three years before the national elections in 2024, Steenhuisen noted.
The ANC looked set to also lose control of Tshwane and eThekwini to the DA.
The first council meeting to elect speaker and mayor of eThekwini collapsed on Monday after ANC supporters stormed the gathering.
This was after it became apparent that the IFP and other small parties were going to vote a DA candidate to become mayor. The meeting is scheduled to resume tomorrow.
Tshwane was set to meet today to elect the mayor and speaker.
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