The latest round in the Tshwane saga exposes MEC Lebogang Maile for what he essentially is, a bully. Over the past few weeks, he has sent letters and made media statements regarding the Tshwane Speaker, not necessarily in that order. But his huffing and puffing will not blow the Tshwane house down.
Maile has variously: attempted to put Tshwane under administration but has misapplied section 139 of the Constitution, attempted a coup d’etat by sending officials to hijack control over Tshwane Council meetings, and has accused Speaker, Katlego Mathebe of misconduct over her recusing herself when an item came up that involved her own position and over her insisting on her authority in terms of standing rules and law.
But Speaker Mathebe has more than adequately responded. However, Maile refuses to understand that his role is to oversee and not control. Instead, he wants to act on the challenges of the legacy of problems inherited by the DA-led Council citing some extreme form of failure. In so doing he completely disregards the facts that plans exist, independent bodies such as National Treasury have given the Council the thumbs-up and that there are ANC-led Councils in his province that have massive problem.
Indeed, the record shows that Speaker Mathebe has acted very correctly in terms of:
- her recusal;
- her responses to the section 139 actions by Maile, and
- the ordering of the agenda at the most recent Council meeting
Maile should rather look to authoritative sources to determine what an MEC’s position really ought to be in respect of the Tshwane matter. These include:
- The Court judgement handed down recently in the Gauteng North High Court, Item 13 and 14 of the Code of Conduct;
- Sections 151, 153 and 154 of the Constitution;
- Section 59 of the Municipal Systems Act; and
- Section 36 of the Municipal Structures Act
If the Speaker is wrong, then Maile can go to Court. But he won’t go the legal route because he knows his actions are not legal.
The truth is that Maile believes that the only person standing in the ANC’s way to grab power is the Speaker. Hence his attacks, which have become personal. He cannot grab power. He is frustrated and resents being shown up for being powerless.
He is a bully. We will not allow anyone to continue to be bullied by him for a moment longer. We invite anyone being victimised by Maile or any of his cohorts to contact us and we will assist in whatever way we can.