Councillor Lloyd Phillips from the Good Party told The Star that he had lost faith in Phalatse’s leadership following revelations that during her time as MMC for Health and Social Development, she had given a generous grant worth R11 millions to an organisation called the Field Band Foundation associated with the rehabilitation of drug addicts.
Phillips said the concerning part was that the organisation had been chaired by Herman Mashaba for over a decade, and his wife was a director at the NGO. More than 90 NGOs had applied for the grant.
The worrying part was that the Field Band Foundation did not meet the specifications of the grant.
Opposition parties have been trying to hold the mayor accountable for this transaction through a motion of no confidence, but the Multi-Party Coalition argued that the matter was before the courts and the police.
Philips said the confusing part was that Mashaba had opened a criminal case against Phalatse in connection to the matter.
“We discovered that Herman was a chairman of that foundation for around 15 years. We couldn’t understand that out of 93 foundations, why that foundation, and now I don’t know what is happening because Herman has opened a case against the mayor,” Phillips said.
Phillips said another reason he wanted the mayor out was that the mayor was servicing the rich in the City of Johannesburg over the poor.
Phillips said while the Multi-Party Coalition was telling the people of Soweto to pay their electricity, she had wiped off the debt of some private schools in Johannesburg.
“We got a report in council that she wiped away the electricity debt of some private schools, and it is annoying that she is servicing the rich and not caring about the poor,” Phillips said.
Phillips said he had lost faith in the mayor and wanted her out of the mayoral seat.
“The mayor is too focused on internal council affairs and hiring and firing people where service delivery is taking place,” Philips said.
A spokesperson for the Multi-Party Coalition, Corner Mulder, told The Star that opposition parties were trying to remove the mayor for a matter that is being investigated by police.
On the other hand, Colleen Makhubele, the Cope Chair of Chairs in the City, has been served with an interdict by her Multi-Party Coalition partners, who accuse her of coronating herself as Acting Speaker of Council.