Makhado local municipality plans to elect its new mayor today, just after lunch, while its mother district municipality, Vhembe, will elect its new mayor tomorrow.
The councils are expected to elect their former council speakers, Friddah Nkondo and Dorcus Mboyi, as per last week’s recommendation by the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC).
Sekhukhune, on the other hand, is expected to have a new mayor on Friday. The council will have a special council sitting on Friday and former Makhuduthamaga local municipality mayor Minah Bahula is expected to be elected as new mayor.
If elected, Bahula will be the fifth mayor for the beleaguered district municipality in less than 24 months.
In the transition between the old regime and the new after the 2021 November municipal polls, the municipality was led by Stan Ramaila.
Ramaila was later ousted by the South African Local Government Association Limpopo boss Julia Mathebe.
But Mathebe’s leadership was short-lived.
She was forced to step aside from her position both as ANC Sekhukhune regional chair and executive mayor amid her alleged involvement in the controversial VBS Mutual Bank scandal.
In light of this, the ANC in the region, led by its regional secretary, Mathope Tala, appointed a caretaker mayor, Maleke Mokganyetsi, to lead the institution on temporary basis.
Now, after thorough deliberations, the NEC of the ANC finalised that Bahula must take the lead and replace Mokganyetsi as new mayor for the troubled Sekhukhune district municipality.
Directive from Luthuli House
Luthuli House sent the directive to the Limpopo ANC’s provincial executive committee (PEC) last week to put the directive into action.
Tala (regional secretary) described Bahula as a workaholic leader, imbokodo (the rock) and a selfless cadre who knows the politics of the ANC inside out. He said Bahula has more than 20 years of experience in local governance and would not disappoint.
“She is a true combatant, a fighter and a mother of the nation.
“We believe under her tutelage, there will be a breath of fresh air waiting for all the people of Sekhukhune to inhale,” he said.
Hope for the future
The opposition, led by Seun Mogotji of the Bolsheviks Party of South Africa, also said it had hope for the future.
“This municipality is one of the badly run councils in South Africa.
“It is characterised by elements of corruption and maladministration – the statistics of which are with the police.
“We have been crying all these years, asking for President Cyril Ramaphosa to come to our rescue.
“But we will just wait and see if the incoming mayor will impress.
“We will give her a chance and support her, but if and when she fumbles, we will be the first to show her the door,” he said.
Spokesperson for the Vhembe district municipality, Matodzi Ralushai said the incoming mayor, Nkondo, is former council speaker.
“We have no doubt she will do things by the book as she has many years of experience in local government under her belt,” he said.
‘New leaders to stand the test of time’
Last week, ANC provincial secretary Reuben Madazhe said the new crop of leaders were bound to stand the test of time and take local government to greater heights.
“These mayoral candidates are among the best comrades in our ranks, possessing substantial experience in local government.
“They have the ability to advance our mission of delivering essential services to our people.
The ANC PEC calls on all our structures and communities to support them as they work towards building better municipalities that provide basic services to our people,” said Madazhe.