DA welcomes SALGA presentation at the NCOP hearing

The Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the submissions made by the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) during the National Council Of Provinces (NCOP) hearing held in Tshwane yesterday, regarding the move by Gauteng Cooperative Governance MEC Lebogang Maile to dissolve the City Council in terms of Section 139 of the Constitution.

The NCOP continued to engage with SALGA and other stakeholders during the second day of the hearing.

SALGA made several proposals to the NCOP for solutions to solve the current impasse in the City of Tshwane.

It stated that Section 139 should be the last resort and that the MEC and the provincial government should have placed more emphasis on Section 154, which translates into providing more support to the City of Tshwane where needed.

SALGA also stated that it should have been part of this process, but it was excluded.

It said it would have lobbied different parties and spheres of government to work together, and that the MEC had never contacted SALGA, and they do not therefore have sufficient evidence at this stage to confirm that section 154 has been exhausted.

Furthermore, SALGA requires an opportunity to approach the municipality to solve the political problems between parties.

It said it does not believe that the allegations of corruption should form part of the decision to dissolve the City of Tshwane, as there are other processes to be followed to resolve this.

The SALGA representative went on to say that if the problem is not solved now, an election wont solve it either, as the parties will come back after the election and still face the same problems.

The DA believes that SALGA’s response is a sober and realistic one that should be taken seriously by the NCOP before approving the dissolution.

Furthermore, the DA calls on the NCOP  to be non partisan to any political party, to put the residents of Tshwane first, and to consider the input of all stakeholders.

The DA challenges the NCOP to disapprove the dissolution of Tshwane and refer the matter back to both the provincial government and SALGA to first exhaust all internal processes within the Constitution, before reverting to the most extreme measures whereby the residents of Tshwane would suffer the most.