The African National Congress (ANC) in the Nelson Mandela Bay Region has asked MEC of Local Government and Traditional Affairs, Fikile Xasa, to place the municipality under administration, saying governance and service delivery have collapsed in the city.
In a statement, the ANC Nelson Mandela Bay Region said mayor Athol Trollip had failed to govern the municipality and was preoccupied with infighting within the coalition and ousting deputy mayor Mongameli Bobani.
The ANC said they had contacted Xasa and asked him to invoke Section 139 of the Constitution and place the metro under administration.
"Since the local government elections in August 2016, governance and service delivery have collapsed in the City. This clearly shows the inability of the DA coalition to run the municipality," said regional spokesperson, Gift Ngqondi.
"Crucially, the all-important Budget Amendments and Financial Statements to the Auditor General have still not been tabled in Council for compliance as the deadline is the 31st of August," he said.
Ngqondi said it was a known fact that the DA had been clueless in fulfilling their governance obligations.
"As a result, the political leadership under this administration could not address the community of the metro on the recent water crisis and recent forced evictions in Wells Estate," he said.
'Situation has deteriorated'
He also highlighted that the DA had failed to present quarterly reports to the council, as required by law.
"The situation has deteriorated to the point where governance has been compromised and suffocated because of the infighting within the coalition. The residents of Nelson Mandela Bay have been relegated to the sidelines and those within the coalition are busy playing petty politics at the expense of service delivery," he said.
Nelson Mandela Bay mayoral spokesperson, Sibongile Dimbaza, told News24 they had noted the ANC's statement but found it misleading.
"This municipality is far more stable than it has been in years.
"The evidence of this is through the many milestones we have made in the area of service delivery in the past year and thus, there is absolutely no basis for putting the municipality under administration," he said.
Ngqondi said the infighting had created an ineffective state organ and had rendered the municipality unstable with regard to the government and good administration.
"Our city cannot be held to ransom by political amateurs who are busy playing cheap politics at the expense of our people," he said.
Ngqondi said, as per the ANC's Regional Conference resolutions, the ANC was committed to exhausting all legal and political avenues to ensure Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality could provide basic services to the communities, despite the collapse of DA governance.
"Nelson Mandela Bay council must fall and the municipality be placed under administration, then an election re-run can be held within ninety days, just as it happened at Nquthu in KZN," he said.
"It is not in the best interest of our people to have incompetent leadership, and thereby fail them in delivering crucial services."