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Today I am proud to announce Mr Hannes Coetzee as ActionSA’s Ward Councillor for the Ward 96 By-Election in the City of Tshwane to be held on 5 May 2022.
Hannes is a great South African who has been elected as the Ward Councillor for this ward in 3 local government elections. He recently resigned from the DA and has taken membership with ActionSA.
His reasons for doing so have been clear. He believed that the multi-party coalition that came into office in 2016 would deliver change to his ward but he watched in disbelief as matters did not get better for the residents of his ward, instead they regressed.
This ward that Hannes has served for so many years has been plagued by the ongoing Hammanskraal Water Crisis, unreliable supply of electricity and roads that are falling apart.
As we stand here making this announcement, the residents of this ward have been without electricity for over 36 hours, and this is a common occurrence. People in these communities cannot sell their properties or live with dignity because of the smell of sewerage from the Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Plant and you saw the conditions of these roads when you drove in here today.
It is almost like this ward has no government.
This is why Hannes has made the decision to join ActionSA, because he feels like the residents of this ward are going to be taken seriously under our banner. I was shocked to learn of how Hannes has tried since 2016 to ensure these issues are addressed by his own party. The fact that 6 years later, these issues remain unresolved, says everything that needs to be said about his decision.
On Hannes’ request, ActionSA will engage the multi-party coalition to ensure that these issues receive the due attention in the new financial year budget to be approved in May this year.
Hannes’ candidature is another significant moment for ActionSA. It represents that we are a party that can not only take high levels of support from the ANC but also attract people from across the spectrum in South Africa who are all driven by the need for action in their communities. In this regard I am confident that Hannes will make an excellent ActionSA Ward Councillor with his track record of excellent service to his ward.
Hannes is a trained artisan with a track record in public and civil service dating back to 1988 in which he has served:
- as part of a team in Johannesburg that reduced water losses from 30% to 6% in the City,
- as the ward councillor for this ward 96 since 2011,
- as the section 79 Committee Chair for Community Safety,
- in Community and Cluster Policing Forums in Temba, Hammanskraal, and Grootvlei.
- as Deputy Chairperson of the Gauteng Provincial Community Police Board Police Boards,
- and in 2021 Hannes was conferred the title of Alderman, a title reserved for Councillors with the longest service to a municipality.
While Hannes is one of the most qualified and distinguished candidates for a ward that I have ever met, it is features of Hannes’ commitment to community service that I find most compelling.
During our public hearings into the Hammanskraal Water Crisis last year, Hannes was the only elected representative who came to the inquiry and made representations. He did so in service to his community, doing himself no favour within his own party. Hannes spent the entire night last night at the sub-station that was down over the past 36 hours, and repeatedly since 2019, being there to coordinate with municipal officials and communicating to residents. The best indication arose from walking with Hannes through this community and the overwhelming response he receives from passers-by who recognise his community service transcending party politics.
This moment is an important one for ActionSA. We are the party carrying momentum out of the 2021 local government elections and we see by-elections as opportunities to publicly continue this growth and momentum to 2024. We will campaign night and day to win these wards so that we can build hope for South Africans that ActionSA can be a viable alternative to unseating the ANC in 2024.
Issued by ActionSA