One of the first things Mongameli Bobani did as Nelson Mandela Bay's new mayor was to swivel in the chair in the mayoral office in front of the media. It was aimed at riling his arch-rival, Athol Trollip, who had been warming that seat before he was voted out in a motion of no confidence. Bobani playing with the office furniture was a depiction of the state of South African politics: puerile, disengaged from public service and driven by showmanship. This was also evident in the EFF's attempt to oust the mayor of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga. The party was determined to remove him from office, but only through its own motion of no confidence. The EFF members walked out of council when they did not get their way and their pact with the ANC fizzled out. If he remains mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay, Bobani will preside over a R12-billion budget in a city with stark inequalities and substandard services in poor areas. But for him, this has been all about the thrill of the kill, not doing better ...

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