May 21, 2024

Controversial Umvoti mayor ousted through motion of no cofidence

ABC leader Philani Mavundla was removed from his position following a vote of no confidence in his leadership
Photo: Umvoti Local Municipality

The leader of Abantu Batho Congress (ABC) and controversial businessman Philani Mavundla has been removed as the mayor of Umvoti Local Municipality. He was removed this afternoon in a motion of no confidence tabled by the IFP and supported by the ANC. The Speaker who is also a member of ABC, Party Mfundo Masondo, also suffered the same fate at a special council meeting convened by MEC Cooperate Governance (Cogta) MEC Bongi Sithole-Moloi.


Mavundla was replaced by the IFP's Gabriel Malembe, who was also removed from the same position in July 2023, through a motion of no confidence. Malembe was elected as the mayor of Umvoti in 2021 and was voted out after a coalition deal between ABC and the ANC. Masondo has been replaced by Ntombi Ngubane from the ANC, who is now going to take the position of Speaker. ANC and IFP councillors signed a joint motion to remove Mavundla and Masondo last month, but Masondo failed to convene the sitting, forcing MEC Sithole-Moloi to step in. Mavundla was once a deputy mayor at eThekwini municipality and was removed from the position in a motion of no confidence in December 2022.

ANC, which he had helped to retain power in eThekwini after the 2021 local elections, brought the motion of no confidence and was supported by EFF and other smaller parties


ANC KZN said it welcomed the removal of Mavundla from office. Provincial general-secretary, Bheki Mtolo, labelled Mavundla who is the former member of the ANC and Zuma's ally as corrupt, ineffective and highly exaggerated. "We have received a report from the leadership of the Inkosi Bhambatha Region about the removal of the corrupt, ineffective, but highly exaggerated Cllr Philani Mavundla as the Mayor of Umvoti Local Municipality. His ongoing looting of the municipality's coffers has been scuppered by his removal,' Mtolo said, alleging that they have mounting evidence that proves that in one week, Mavundla used the municipality as a vehicle for self-enrichment and also turned it into his cash cow. 


Mavundla's party insisted that he was still the mayor. "Today marked the 'removal' of ABC president PG Mavundla from his position as mayor of Umvoti municipality following a newly formed alliance between the ANC and the IFP. Despite Mavundla securing a temporary court order yesterday instructing COGTA to halt the meeting, the proceedings went ahead. The political interference in Umvoti has hit a new low as it appears that there are now two mayors and two speakers in place. We can confidently confirm that Mavundla and Masondo continue to hold their positions," the party said in a statement.

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