Mpho Phalatse

City of Johannesburg Executive Mayor, Dr Mpho Phalatse. Photo: Twitter/ @our_da

Mpho Phalatse addresses fears she could be the next JHB mayor to die

The ANC has lost three Johannesburg mayors successively in just a space of ten months, but Mpho Moerane isn’t fazed

Mpho Phalatse

City of Johannesburg Executive Mayor, Dr Mpho Phalatse. Photo: Twitter/ @our_da

Current Johannesburg Mayor Dr Mpho Phalatse says the successive deaths of her three predecessors has raised fears that she could be the next person to meet their end, but she is not fazed.

Phalatse spoke at the funeral of former mayor Mpho Moerane in Alexandra on Sunday, 22 May 2022. Moerane died on Wednesday after sustaining injuries in a serious car accident.

Phalatse said 18 councillors have died between 2016 and 2021, including her predecessors.

Geoff Makhubo succumbed to COVID-19 related complications in July 2021. In August, Jolidee Matongo was sworn in to complete Makhubo’s term, but he also died a month later in a car accident. When Moerane took over the seat, there had already been concerns within political circles, but he assured them that all would be well. He was mayor until November when the ANC lost Johannesburg to the DA in the municipal elections and was replaced by Phalatse.

Phalatse acknowledged the tragedies that have befallen the city, saying in part: “We’ve been through a lot as the city…it’s all too much for us to take in, we have so many questions. I’ve received many words of condolences, prayers but am also detecting a lot of fear, a fear that I would be next”


The current Johannesburg Mayor, who is a devout christian, has assured mourners at Moerane’s funeral that she will not be next as she has faith in God.

“And indeed, as staticians would say, the balance of probabilities is that if one looks at city mayorship, there is a very concerning pattern. But I want to let everyone know that I will not die prematurely, we trust God to deliver us. I’ve been warned not to entertain that thinking but to rather trust in life, because death and life are words of the tongue.”

Johannesburg Mayor Dr Mpho Phalatse

Moerane was the leader of the ANC caucus in the city and headed the regional task team fundraiser.