FOUR EFF councillors in the Enoch Mgijima Municipality brought the meeting to a standstill on Tuesday, accusing executive mayor Lindiwe Gunuza Nkwentsha of stealing a cow from the municipal pound.
EFF chief whip Luthando Amos said Gunuza Nkwentsha could not table the mayor’s quarterly report as she had been accused of a crime. The party did not provide any proof.
Amos also wanted to know from council speaker Mzoxolo Peter why a related motion by the EFF on January 19 was not on the agenda.
Peter said the motions were subjected to certain processes before being brought before council. “It would be premature to bring the matter to council now as it is still speculation,” he said.
DA councillor Malibongwe Xhelisilo said the matter was urgent and should have been brought to council.
Budget and treasury head Madoda Papiyane said acting municipal manager Smilo Dayi should advise the speaker and proposed a clear report be tabled in the next council meeting.
The theft allegation relates to rumours that Gunuza Nkwentsha had taken a cow from the municipal pound late last year. The claim, of which The Rep has a copy, was made by the EFF in its motion to Peter.
Amos wrote, “An anonymous call was made .. to the office of the EFF that it was alleged that the executive mayor, councillor Lindiwe Gunuza Nkwentsha, abused her position by using a municipal truck while illegally soliciting a cow without following the municipal auction processes [sic].”
When Peter would not allow the matter to be discussed in council, EFF councillors took out placards and stood as Gunuza Nkwentsha was presenting her report, singing, “Bring back the cow.”
The placards stated, “Stop municipal corruption” and “#Cowthiefmustfall”.
UDM councillor Mthuthuzeli Hokolo said a commission of inquiry was needed.
Gunuza Nkwentsha said she would agree to the establishment of an inquiry.
The EFF eventually left the meeting, with Peter apologising for their “misbehaviour” and saying “the chief whip [Funeka Sopapazi] and I will look into it”.