The leadership of the Democratic Alliance in eThekwini has written to every member of the city’s Executive Committee to request that they agree to call an urgent meeting. In terms of the Municipal Structures Act, the majority of members of EXCO can force the Mayor to convene EXCO.
Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda has not called an Executive Committee meeting in 16 days and has ignored calls to urgently fulfil his duty and call a meeting. eThekwini is in the midst of an absolute crisis and there is a shocking lack of urgency to respond to the demands of communities.
The reality, however, is that Kaunda is not an Executive Mayor. He is the Chair of an Executive Committee that holds detailed legal responsibilities to eThekwini residents. The Municipal Structures Act lists the powers and functions of EXCO, to which ten members are elected in their own names.
The members of EXCO are:
• Mxolisi Kaunda, Nkosenhle Madlala, Thanduxolo Sabelo and Zama Sokhabase (ANC);
• Philani Mavundla (ABC), who occupies on the ANC’s five EXCO seats;
• Nicole Graham, Thabani Mthethwa and Yogis Govender (DA);
• Thabane Miya (EFF);
• Mdu Nkosi (IFP).
The reasons why EXCO is not meeting are also concerning. It seems that Mayor Kaunda, who is apparently indisposed, does not wish his deputy, Councillor Philani Mavundla, to chair EXCO in his absence. The political shenanigans and divisions within the ruling party cannot bring service delivery and governance to a halt.
Meetings of EXCO do not and should not happen for their own sake – they are an important interface between the representatives of communities and the officials who are tasked with delivering services. This is even more critical when everything is falling apart, as it is. People need answers and solutions.
The DA will continue to fight for solutions in eThekwini. We call on all members of EXCO to put politics aside and do the right thing.