- Mpho Phalatse continues to decry her removal as the mayor of Johannesburg.
- She says she still believes she is the mayor because the council sitting that removed her was unlawful.
- Phalatse adds she will fight on to return to office and finish her mandate to the city “she loves”.
Mpho Phalatse still believes she is the mayor of Johannesburg.
While introducing herself as mayor, Phalatse said she was willing to reach across the political aisle to reverse the ANC’s return to power.
She was ousted in a council sitting on 30 September.
Phalatse filed a court application at the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg, attempting to reverse the council’s decision to remove her and appoint ANC councillor Dada Morero.
In a short address on Wednesday, she used every political commentary to describe what she believed was a chaotic term ahead for the city if the ANC remained in control.
Phalatse described her removal as an illegal coup, a power grab, and a cynical plot to delay the progress made by the multiparty coalition government since January.
She said what was at stake for the residents of Johannesburg was a reversal of the following gains: “The R2.8 billion invested in the city’s water infrastructure and the 157% increase in the arrest of cable thieves, to the 1 800 new JMPD officers deployed in the inner city, we have already made a visible difference across the city.
“But on Friday, that was all brought to a halt when the ANC was let back into office by people who couldn’t care less about the fate of Johannesburg. People for whom self-advancement trumps everything else.”
Besides the court review, Phalatse, in her address, seemed to point to other political parties represented in the council.
She said many political parties campaigned to voters, ahead of the local government elections, on a message of keeping the ANC out of power.
The Johannesburg DA leader added these parties had a responsibility and a duty to their voters to join hands and keep the ANC out of office.
Phalatse did not name the political parties.
“I’ve said before, and I still maintain, that a court victory alone will not see the city restored to a trusted government. There is a political battle to be fought too. A battle to appeal to the senses of political parties who genuinely care about our city and its residents.
“Parties whose voters tasked them with ensuring that the ANC does not get its hands on their rates and taxes. These parties have an obligation to their voters. A duty to rise above party politics, to choose to enter the fight, joining hands with others to keep the ANC out.”
She also defended the DA’s decision not to compromise by reviewing the coalition agreement because it would have led to instability and not fairness, as some in the coalition have alleged.