New Joburg mayor Mpho Moerane pays tribute to his predecessors
By Baldwin Ndaba
Newly-elected City of Joburg Mayor Mpho Moerane has retained most of the members of the mayoral committee appointed by his predecessor Geoff Makhubo who succumbed to Covid-19 related complications in July.
Moerane made the appointments moments after he was elected in the council chambers on Friday in a vote of confidence supported by the ANC’s coalition partners including the IFP, UDM, AIC, Cope and Al Jamah.
“The decision to keep the MMCs who took office under the leadership of the late mayor Geoff Makhubo in December 2019 is meant to ensure continuity in the implementation of the people centred government of local unity (GLU) priorities.
“These are priorities informed by the expressed interests of Joburg residents and articulated in the Joburg Growth and Development Strategy (GDS) 2040,” Moerane said.
Paying tribute to his predecessors, Makhubo and Jolidee Matongo who died in a horrific car crash last month, Moerane said: “In his May 4 State of the City Address (Soca), Makhubo committed to rebuild and transform Joburg into a thriving City that we all aspire it to be.
“He labelled the current governing environment amidst the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic – a public emergency that needed to be tackled as such in how we serve the people of Joburg.
“Without wasting time, Makhubo had launched the 120 Days Accelerated Service Delivery Programme.
“He wanted to make sure that the City’s service delivery foot soldiers delivered to standards and timelines committed to in their respective business plans.
“However, we lost Mayor Makhubo in July 2021 – not long after he had launched the 120 Days Programme.
“In an attempt to ensure that service delivery to Joburg residents continued, the GLU remained intact and endorsed the election of mayor Jolidee Matongo into office.
“In just six weeks after his election, Matongo had won the hearts of many residents and councillors, including those from opposition parties, who hung their hopes on him to turn the City around due to his demonstrated commitment and work ethic as a leader.
“Matongo was young, had a vision and all the necessary traits to lead a metropolitan City like Joburg into a progressive developmental local government,” Moerane said.
He said Matongo hit the ground running together with his MMCs, as well as heads of
departments and entities through the heightened version of the Accelerated Service Delivery Programme from the first week in office.
“Matongo also did not waste any time in demonstrating his commitment to public service by ensuring that we were all in overalls and on the streets of Joburg every week conducting oversight on service delivery progress.
“Last Friday he had led us into Soweto where residents had started taking to the streets in protest against prolonged power cuts by Eskom, Matongo insisted that we go to the affected areas to establish why residents were left without electricity.
“We visited mini substations that had either blown up due to illegal connections pressure or were vandalised resulting in the prolonged power cuts as Eskom had run out of mini substations to replace them,” Moerane remembered. Political Bureau