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NMB mayor Gary van Niekerk unpacks council meeting

Nelson Mandela Bay executive mayor Gary van Niekerk, joined by council speaker Eugene Johnson and chief whip Wandisile Jikeka.

PHOTO: SHADLEY NASH


A financial misconduct investigation against suspended Nelson Mandela Bay city manager Noxolo Nqwazi on Wednesday commenced with "immediate effect".

This comes after the municipality's disciplinary board's recommendation, which ordered that the investigation report be presented in council when it's ready.

Nqwazi, who faces serious allegations, including fruitless and wasteful expenditure on her watch, had been suspended with full pay since October 2023.

During a post-council media briefing on Thursday, executive mayor Gary van Niekerk said the session was the first of many to come.

Van Niekerk was joined by council speaker, Eugene Johnson.

"Going forward, as part of a bigger picture to improve communication, you will also hear us in different media platforms like community radio [stations]," he said.

Van Niekerk also revealed details about the metro's budget reduction as it relates to grant funding.

The mayor said council had approved his recommendations pertaining to the budget amendment on the R171-million budget cuts on grant funding expenditure.

"This means that the council should reprioritise the projects that have been affected by the budget cut."

Meanwhile, a motion for a vote of no confidence in Van Niekerk was one of several motions deferred at Wednesday's council meeting, which was adjourned late in the afternoon to allow councillors the opportunity to attend budget and IDP public meetings across the city.

Johnson said there was a lot of interest in the motion of no confidence in the mayor.

"We know that there's interest in that motion... it has already been discussed.

"All that needs to happen is that it needs to be voted on," Johnson said.

Council chief whip, Wandisile Jikeka, said he was confident that the motion of no confidence in the mayor will be defeated.

"That particular motion will see it's day and I can give you, free of charge, that it will be defeated. Because we can't, as a ruling coalition [government], allow another party to determine or dictate how we must run our own affairs," Jikeka said.

The notice was filed by GOOD councillor Lawrence Troon in January and is now expected to be debated on 29 April.