DURBAN - The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal was set to reclaim Umvoti Local Municipality from the IFP through a vote of no confidence on Thursday.
The ANC teamed up with the Abantu Batho Congress (ABC), and filed for a motion of no confidence to oust IFP mayor Gabriel Malembe.
The municipality which covers Greytown, part of Msinga and Kranskop town has 27 council seats – the ANC has 10 seats, IFP nine, ABC seven while the DA has one.
During the inaugural council meeting, the IFP teamed up with the ABC and took control of the council. For the assistance, the IFP rewarded ABC's Siyabonga Zondi with a deputy mayor's position.
ABC President Philani Mavundla entered into a deal with the ANC in eThekwini Municipality and was rewarded with a deputy mayor's position.
Sources claim that there was a feeling that the relationship should expand to other municipalities where the ABC is a kingmaker.
Mavundla told the Daily News on Wednesday that his party would dump IFP and work with ANC to take control of Umvoti Local Municipality, but he refused to discuss how positions would be allocated.
A source inside the municipality told the Daily News that on Monday, Mavundla wanted mayor and speaker's position and leave the deputy mayor's position with the ANC. However, the ANC regional leadership was unhappy with the offer since it would be a majority party in the coalition.
ANC regional chairperson Lucky Moloi said no decision had been reached on how to share power. But he added that his party and ABC would defintely vote the IFP out of power.
"For now we are focusing on removing the IFP mayor, then look at how we allocate positions later," said Moloi.
IFP regional leader Xolani Msezane said his party was disappointed by Mavundla's action. However, it had realised that after agreeing to work with the ANC in eThekwini, it was expected that the relationship would affect other municipalities where his party was working with other parties.
"Our top leadership is trying to manage the situation but politics is a game of numbers so anything can happen today," said Msezane.
Meanwhile, the IFP is expected to reclaim Mtubatuba Local Municipality from ANC next week when the council sits.
The Pietermaritzburg High Court on Wednesday ordered Speaker Dipuo Ntuli to call a council meeting next Thursday so that a motion of no confidence could take place. According to Ntuli, the court ruled that the council meeting two weeks ago – where the IFP reclaimed the municipality – was illegal, but ordered her to call a meeting for a motion of no confidence to take place.
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