26/09/2016: ANC sabotages Orange Farm Community Meeting
This afternoon I planned to meet with the community of Orange Farm to discuss very serious issues with regard to land, housing and service delivery.
This is a community that has been neglected for far too long and I wanted to speak to them in person and hear first-hand some of the pressing issues they are facing.
Upon arrival it was clear that a small group of ANC members, transported in, were intent on disrupting the meeting which was well attended by genuine members of the community.
The hall had been flooded, the gate had been chained with a padlock and rubbish was strewn all over the hall. Upon trying to start the meeting, ANC members entered the hall, disrupting the meeting.
It is most unfortunate that the actions of a small unruly group, brought in from outside of the community, can upset an engagement with the members of the community. The community showed up to engage with the new leadership of the City, wanting to be heard on their plight after years of neglect.
Instead, they had to witness the desperate actions of an ANC battling to come to terms with its new role in opposition.
I would not allow this to stop me from doing my job. I am a Mayor for every resident in our City and everyone has a right to be heard.
In attempting to proceed with the meeting, ANC members entered the hall and disrupted proceedings. I was forced to leave a hall that was filled with community members that only wanted an opportunity to be heard.
I have been informed, on good authority, that these disgraceful actions were directed by senior ANC representatives in the area, Councillor Motha, who is in fact the ANC chairperson in the area, and Councillor Mazibukwana.
I have written to the Chief Whip of Council, Cllr Kevin Wax, to initiate an investigation into the conduct of these councillors. I also call on the ANC leadership to immediately investigate what occurred today and take strong action. Video footage of the incident is available, and I will be laying criminal charges against those involved.
I condemn these actions in the strongest terms. The ANC in Johannesburg needs to accept that it is in opposition and must respect the mandate that has been given to the DA and its coalition partners.
Continuing with such actions does nothing to serve the interests of the residents of our City, and can only hamper our ability to deliver services to our people.
I am committed to running a responsive and caring administration in Johannesburg and I wish to assure the residents of Orange Farm that I will not be intimidated by ANC thuggery.
I plan to return to Orange Farm soon to hear their grievances and ensure that they are attended to.