Joburg residents get another ‘puppet mayor’

By Zukile Majova
Political Editor

It’s a case of more of the same for the City of Joburg as the ANC has decided to elect another “puppet mayor” to lead the R90 billion metro.

The unknown Kabelo Gwamanda replaces the little known Thapelo Amad, who resigned as executive mayor last week.

They are both councillors from the Muslim party Al Jama-ah, which got less than 1% of the vote in the 2021 municipal elections.

Amad survived less than three months in office. During that time, he tried to tie the city down to a R9 billion loan that he claimed would fast track service delivery and fund the creation of a “Smart City”.

Gauteng premier Panyaza Lesufi, who is the architect of these “puppet mayors”, said the ANC caucus decided to maintain its agreement with Al Jama-ah.

The party has three seats in the 270 seat council.

Former DA mayor Dr Mpho Phalatse said Gwamanda was a “compromise candidate” in the politics of the ANC.

“It’s not about competency. It’s not about who can do the job. It’s about who the ANC and the EFF can control, and unfortunately, this is what you (Johannesburg residents) got.”

Phalatse, who stood as a DA candidate, had no chance at the mayoral chain after her party walked out of the coalition of opposition parties that helped it take control of the city in December 2021.

ActionSA, which leads a new coalition with the IFP, ACDP, FF-Plus and UIM, fielded Fikeni Ngobeni as its mayoral candidate.

The fragmentation of the opposition guaranteed victory for the ANC-EFF coalition.

Pictured above: Kabelo Gwamanda of the Al Jama-ah party has been elected mayor of the City of Johannesburg

Image source: Twitter

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