The Tshwane ANC has reprimanded mayor Solly Msimanga for “insulting” Gauteng Premier David Makhura when he said the premier seemed to think he was running a “spaza shop”.
Msimanga was reacting to the premier’s comments on Wednesday in Hammanskraal, when he told the community the mayor was “hiding” from them amid the water crisis in the area.
While meeting residents over concerns about the safety of their drinking water, Makhura said: “I know you want the mayor [to come] as in yesterday, because he has been hiding. I promise to drag him here next week, whether he likes it or not.”
Addressing the council yesterday, Msimanga said Makhura had expected him to jump at his last-minute demand that he join the meeting.
“To hear that the premier said the mayor will be dragged kicking and screaming was very unfortunate,” Msimanga said.
“I had already told the premier that he contacted me at 3pm inviting me to a meeting the next morning.
“We are running a city. We are not running a spaza shop. I shouldn’t have to drop everything to attend a meeting.”
His comments rubbed the ANC up the wrong way, with councillor Aaron Maluleke accusing Msimanga of insulting Makhura.
But Msimanga stood his ground, saying the premier went to meet the residents without engaging with his office, which was ready to update him on the false rumours of cholera in Hammanskraal water.
“We could have given [Makhura] a report saying that all the interventions that are needed in Hammanskraal are being done.”
Makhura also said Msimanga was dragging his feet in constructing a scientific research project expected to create at least a thousand jobs in Hammanskraal.