Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip. Picture: BRIAN WITBOOI
Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip. Picture: BRIAN WITBOOI

Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip survived yet another attempt to remove him after opposition party councilors walked out of the chamber on Thursday.

Less than 30 minutes into the council meeting the opposition complained that agendas had been delivered late and not within the prescribed five working days. The councilors argued that this meant the meeting was illegal and if their motions succeeded, Trollip would take them to court.

United Front councilor Mkhuseli Mtsila said his agenda was delivered on Wednesday last week and Thursday was a holiday. "An agenda of council is supposed to be delivered in five working days. The delivery does not meet council rule 12.3 in terms of delivery of agendas."

Speaker Jonathan Lawack explained that the late delivery of agendas was a result of a problem with the printers. "The agenda was probably delivered late to some of the councilors. On the day of printing, our printing machines broke down and printing had to be outsourced.

"I have been a councilor for nine years and during the tenure of the ANC, agendas were often delivered late but today it’s an excuse for meetings not to go ahead‚ deceiving the people of the metro."

The opposition councilors had planned to remove mayor Trollip‚ Lawack, and chief whip Werner Senekal through no-confidence motions. The Patriotic Alliance (PA)‚ which first said it would support the bid to remove them and install a new coalition government‚ backed out at the last minute on Wednesday due to its ongoing impasse with the EFF.

At a media briefing, the PA’s Marlon Daniels apologised for what had transpired. "We apologise to each citizen for the meeting not being able to quorate. Had the PA given support to the opposition, we would have mayhem right now. We were insulted and we won’t give our support to the opposition today‚ tomorrow or ever again."

Lawack said he would announce a date for the next meeting to discuss the agenda in due time.