The Speaker of the Gauteng Provincial Legislature, Ntombi Mekgwe, denied the DA’s request to debate a matter of urgent public importance this morning, following yesterday’s disruption by the ANC at the Johannesburg City Council.
Protestors stormed the council chamber and were threatening councillors and city employees while trashing furniture, laptops and smashing glass doors. Police had to resort to the use of stun grenades to disperse the mob.
Those who attended the meeting were left shaken and traumatised by the level of violence and destruction they had witnessed. Many, fearing for their lives, hid in cupboards and empty offices until the police arrived.
The agenda of these protestors were politically motivated to disrupt the business of the council.
Their actions were undemocratic and informed by a campaign of “un-governability” synonymous with protests in municipalities led by the DA in coalition governments in the province.
By denying this debate of public importance, the speaker is accepting that lawlessness and “un-governability” campaigns of the ANC will prevail.
The Speaker has once again supressed freedom of speech and has shown her bias towards the ANC. The residents of Johannesburg and the province have a right to debate matters such as these as it directly affects service delivery.
Despite the thuggish behaviour of the ANC and their affiliates to deter the DA from governing, the DA yesterday passed its very first successful budget adjustment in the council.
With this budget adjustment passed, the DA can now implement its plans in the city to uplift communities, cut corruption and deliver much needed quality services which the residents of the city deserve.