Drought levy gets go-ahead, De Lille’s powers curtailed

The City of Cape Town voted on Friday to both limit mayor Patricia De Lille’s powers to handle the drought crisis, and to introduce punitive tariff measures for residents.

A special council sitting on Friday was due to address the introduction of punitive tariffs for residents falling within certain usage limits.

This, after it withdrew the proposal to introduce a controversial water levy earlier in the day.

Before voting took place however, De Lille was seemingly blindsided by an amendment brought by deputy mayor Ian Neilson.

In the proposed amendment, De Lille’s statutory powers would remain the same, but her powers to deal with the drought unilaterally would now be shared by the mayoral committee as a whole.

Reporting lines will also change, with executive director for water affairs Gisela Kaiser reporting final outcomes to Neilson and mayoral committee member for water affairs Xanthea Limberg.

The role of executive director in the mayor’s office, Craig Kesson, was thus also diminished.

Before voting, De Lille raised objections with the amendment, admitting she had not been consulted.

She said that in ordinary process, an amendment first needs to go through support staff, who then deliver it to the city manager.

“The city manager then puts the amendments before the council. I’m questioning the process, because due process was not followed, and that it is reviewed.

“Lastly, I have not been consulted as the executive mayor,” she said, to noise from the ANC caucus.

The ANC also rejected the proposed amendment to limit De Lille’s powers.

“It has nothing to do with the proposal before us,” ANC councillor Xolani Sotashe said.

“The DA FedEx is taking a decision on behalf of the council. What you read here, is exactly what [DA leader] Mmusi Maimane suggested to the public last weekend.

“We are not going to allow a situation where a political party takes a decision, and here where we are sitting as councillors, we become robbed of authority.”

In the end, 125 councillors voted for Neilson’s amendment, while 57 voted against it, and three abstained.

Earlier in the day, the proposed introduction of a drought levy was scrapped after the proposal was withdrawn.

Council members debated the proposal following strong public backlash to the idea since it was mooted on Sunday.

Opposition and ruling party councillors said a U-turn on the proposal should be strongly considered following the public’s input, some of which included 55 000 inputs from one website alone. – News24

Paul Herman
Paul Herman works from London. London based Songwriter/Producer. Paul has written songs for Artists like Dido, Emeli Sande, Corinne Bailey Rae, Eminem, Izzy Bizu, Raleigh Ritchie... Paul Herman has over 260 followers on Twitter.

Unions slam move to cut wage bill

Cosatu rejects job losses and a wage freeze for public servants, calling this ‘a declaration of war’

Coronavirus: South Africa will evacuate citizens from Wuhan

The government is expected to evacuate citizens from Wuhan, where the coronavirus outbreak originated

Primedia CEO Essack leaves following internal battles

Omar Essack leaves the 702 and 94.7 owners after a protracted standoff with the board

‘We’re satisfied with SA’s land reform policy’— US Ambassador

Top US official is lobbying multinational firms to invest in South Africa

Press Releases

Over R400-m given to businesses since launch of three-minute overdraft

The 3-minute overdraft radically reduces the time it takes for businesses to have their working capital needs met

Tourism can push Africa onto a new path – minister

The continent is fast becoming a dynamic sought-after tourist destination

South Africa’s education system is broken and unequal, and must be fixed without further delay

The Amnesty International report found that the South African government continues to miss its own education upgrading targets

Business travel industry generates billions

Meetings Africa is ready to take advantage of this lucrative opportunity

Conferences connect people to ideas

The World Expo and Meetings Africa are all about stimulating innovation – and income

SAB Zenzele Kabili B-BBEE share scheme

New scheme to be launched following the biggest B-BBEE FMCG payout in South Africa’s history

Digging deep

Automation is unstoppable, but if we're strategic about its implementation, it presents major opportunities

TFSAs are the gymnasts of the retirement savings world

The idea is to get South Africans to save, but it's best to do your research first to find out if a TFSA is really suited to your needs