Emfuleni Mayor expected to take up top ANC job soon

Speculation has reached fever pitch that Emfuleni’s Executive Mayor is about to resign - possibly as soon as this week - to occupy his elected post as Secretary-General of the Gauteng ANC.

Mayor Jacob Khawe was elected to the crucial Secretary- General post earlier this year in a move seen as underlining the importance of Emfuleni to the electoral fortunes of the
ANC in 2019 especially in Gauteng, South Africa’s economic and financial hub.  However, no official confirmation of resignation was obtained from official local authority sources before going to press but both political and administration sources indicated a move was imminent and expected possibly as soon as month-end October.

“There is no formal letter from the Executive Mayor to Council and he is continuing with Mayoral business as usual,” Mayoral spokesperson Lebo Mofokeng told Vaal Weekblad
this morning.  Mayor Khawe himself also did not respond to an inquiry by Vaalweekblad.  Emfuleni - now under partial administration by Gauteng Province - is seen as potentially a decisive battleground region to influence provincial and even national electoral outcomes in the 2019 general election.

In recent months Emfuleni has assumed an increasingly national media profile on a spectrum of core financial and service delivery issues alongside municipal sewage pollution
of the Vaal river system.  Khawe was elected months ago but did not take up his new position in the Gauteng ANC, which many political sources attributed to his political foresight to first stabilise and turn around administration and service delivery in Emfuleni, and also to prevent an all-out and destructive succession battle within the local ruling ANC.

Khawe was appointed Executive Mayor late last year and at the time of election as ANC Gauteng Secretary-General earlier in 2018 had only been at the helm of the Emfuleni
Local Municipality (ELM) for a few months.  His first move as Executive Mayor was to directly confront Rand Water - which had threatened to limit water supply - by physically blockading the bulk utility’s Head Office in Johannesburg before later taking Eskom on in court to prevent a bulk electricity cutoff, also due to non-payment
by ELM.

The legal battle with Eskom - now temporarily prevented from implementing mass power cutoffs - is still under way. Khawe has been credited with mobilising key business and community support to prevent a major water and electricity blockade crisis in Emfuleni.  Whilst continuing as Executive Mayor despite election as Secretary-General he presided over a number of key revenue generation and service delivery initiatives aimed at beginning the turnaround process at the cash-strapped local authority.
Foremost amongst these are close cooperation with the Golden Triangle Chamber of Commerce (GTCoC) and other community organisations to better manage both ELM
strategic assets and generate sustainable revenue flow and

“The GTCoC is apolitical but we wish Mayor Khawe all the best whenever he does move on and we thank him for placing cooperation with ELM on a solid basis to the
benefit of the people of Emfuleni,” said Klippies Kritzinger, CEO of the GTCoC.