EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu and party spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi have dismissed reports that the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) tried to convince the Patriotic Alliance (PA) to support their motion against Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip.
Despite the fact that PA councillor Marlon Daniels revealed this morning that he had been in talks with EFF councillors about his vote in tomorrow’s motion, the EFF targeted their denials at news channel eNCA.
Shivambu tweeted that the channel was “fake news driving false information about the EFF. We never and will never negotiate with a political party of gangsters, convicted fraudsters. We will remove Throllip [sic] as Mayor of NMB tomorrow without them.”
Ndlozi also tweeted eNCA: “CORRECTION: we never ever spoke to Patriotic Alliance about supporting or working with EFF on Motion of No Confidence in DA’s Trollip. SO, we cannot fail to ‘persuade’ people we NEVER spoke or even tried to persuade. You may be desperate to keep Trollip in PE, BUT get facts Right.”
PA leader Gayton McKenzie wrote a letter on Wednesday announcing his support for the DA and slamming the EFF for alleged racism.
Daniels confirmed on Wednesday morning that his party had agreed to a coalition deal with DA mayor Athol Trollip that will see him ascend to the deputy mayorship of the metro. Daniels also confirmed that he is likely to head up the roads and transport portfolio with the support of the DA-led coalition.
However, he told The Citizen he had turned down the chance to be the city’s mayor from the DA’s opposition in the city. The support of the PA’s one seat in Thursday’s vote of no confidence will likely be enough to keep the DA in power in the important industrial hub of the Eastern Cape.
The so-called black caucus in the city had, he claimed, been trying frantically to sway the PA to change its mind on the vote after news broke on Tuesday night in a letter from PA president Gayton McKenzie that they would not support a motion brought by the EFF against the DA in the city on the basis that, to them, it smacked of racism.
Daniels told The Citizen he found himself in a meeting in the small hours of this morning with representatives from the black caucus comprising councillors from the EFF, AIC and United Front Eastern Cape.
He explained that his relationship with the ANC and UDM in the caucus has been strained since he insisted last week that the ANC should not be allowed to “be the face” of the metro by regaining the mayor’s position.
Despite the fact that the EFF holds more seats than any other black caucus party outside the ANC, they had made it clear they would continue to not form part of the local government.
“They [black caucus councillors] came to my house just after midnight to ask me what I wanted to change my mind. They said ‘anything the PA wants, the PA can get’. They then alluded to the mayorship.”
He claims the EFF had made it clear to him that they had spoken to their president, Julius Malema, and he had “no issue” with Daniels becoming the mayor, as long as the motion against Trollip could be successful.
Daniels said he then phoned McKenzie to “engage” with him about the offer.
However, “we agreed that this is not about positions” and they would continue to support Trollip despite the fact that they have had disagreements with the mayor about his governance of the metro.
Daniels said much could still change ahead of tomorrow morning’s special and general council meetings, as the motions on removing Trollip and electing a new mayor and deputy mayor could still be rescinded by the parties who had brought them.