Today’s eThekwini Council Meeting has collapsed after a quorum was not reached. This meeting was due to elect a new Deputy Mayor after the resignation of Belinda Scott in February. The meeting was also an ordinary Council meeting to consider the month’s business.
The DA had repeatedly requested that the vote for a new Deputy Mayor be held in the prior months, which the Speaker had refused. The ANC eventually named their candidate and inducted Diana Hoorzuk into the Executive Committee last month. It is now clear, however, that she was not a universal choice within the ANC.
At 11am today and after an hour had passed, DA Chief Whip Thabani Mthethwa forced Speaker Weziwe Thusi’s hand into calling off the meeting in terms of the Rules of Order. The Rules are clear that a meeting is no longer valid if it does not quorate within a specific time. The ANC was still caucusing and had not arrived in the Council chamber.
The security situation at the ICC was also precarious, with members of the SANDF present and large groups of bodyguards seemingly being briefed.
In addition to electing the Deputy Mayor, this month’s meeting was to consider critical business relief mechanisms after the Durban riots, adjustments to various budgets and procurement for Durban Solid Waste.
The same thing happened less than a year ago – in November 2020 – when the ANC could not decide who was to be the Acting City Manager.
This all indicates that the ANC is a deeply fractured and divided organisation that focuses more on its internal strife than the progress of this city. After stoking the flames of unrest just two weeks ago, the least the ANC could do is show up to work and get on with business.
The DA looks forward to the Local Government Election and for eThekwini residents to finally show this lot the door.