Chaos broke out earlier this week after a number of African National Congress (ANC) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) supporters disrupted the eThekwini Metro's inaugural council meeting. The proceedings had to be halted while they were led out by police.
The council meeting has been rescheduled until Wednesday owing to a power outage at the Metro headquarters. Councillors continue to disagree on the precise number of councillors in attendance. Opposition parties, particularly the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), have called for a recount of all councillors present at the meeting prior to voting.
"In reality, as the IFP, what we want to see is the continuation of this council. You will recall that according to the laws governing establishments within 14 days after gazetting, tomorrow is the final day. It is critical that this conference continues for the benefit of the eThekwini people. If the ANC is truly on the side of the voters, it must enable democratic procedures to unfold so that the people of eThekwini receive services for which they have waited decades," Thami Ntuli, the IFP's chairwoman in KwaZulu-Natal, elaborates.
Dean Macpherson of the Democratic Alliance says his party is talking with its legal team following Monday's disruption of the eThekwini council meeting by African National Congress (ANC) supporters. The inaugural meeting of the eThekwini municipality council on Monday was hectic, with power outages disrupting the meeting and ANC members storming the premises.
The ANC was alleged to be "panicking" about the prospect of losing the election for mayor. This follows the Inkatha Freedom Party's (IFP) announcement that it will abstain from voting with the ruling party. The eThekwini municipality stated in a statement that its maiden council meeting terminated early due to a power outage at the location.
"While the workers worked on restoring electricity, a group of persons disturbed the gathering. The Municipality is currently conducting an investigation into how the security controls were compromised. Cllr Thabani Nyawose, the newly elected Speaker, would reconvene the meeting in due time," the municipality stated.
Macpherson told IOL following Monday evening's meeting that he would not let the ANC get away with collapsing the meeting.
"They purposefully canceled this meeting because they have crunched the figures and determined that they do not have enough money to elect their mayoral candidate. Instead of confronting reality, they chose to cut the power, ruin the meeting, and look for an excuse to get out," he explained.
"We will not allow them to get away with it. If necessary, we will seek redress through the courts. We're working with our legal team and will send a letter tomorrow to the new speaker and municipal manager requesting information on a variety of issues, but we will not accept any power grab they may be considering at the time."
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