Solly Msimanga Tshwane

Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga after surviving the last motion of no confidence, 30 August 2018 / Photo via Facebook

Solly Msimanga: What happens now he’s resigned as Tshwane Mayor

Following more than two years of service, Solly Msimanga has decided to leave his role as Tshwane mayor. David Makhura, he’s coming for you…

Solly Msimanga Tshwane

Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga after surviving the last motion of no confidence, 30 August 2018 / Photo via Facebook

Solly Msimanga has announced he will be leaving his position as the mayor of Tshwane, in order to concentrate fully on his efforts to run as the Premier of Gauteng.

Why Solly Msimanga is resigning as Tshwane mayor

The DA representative says he is stepping down “to focus on the election campaign ahead”. South Africa will go to the polls in four months time, as the 2019 General Elections get underway.

Msimanga is looking to crank up the heat on the ANC’s David Makhura, who is currently in the premier position. The departing mayor has rallied against his opposite number on the grounds of corruption and his dubious role regarding the current e-tolls saga.

You can guarantee that Solly is going to run with the tried and tested “anti-corruption” stance too. In his official communication sent on Friday afternoon, Msimanga blamed the ANC for making some regions “ungovernable” through their abuse and neglect of the system. He branded the party failures, and vowed to take Gauteng “out of a state of crisis”.

The ups and downs of Mayor Msimanga

Msimanga was chosen to be mayor during the 2016 local elections. It’s been a stay of peaks and troughs for the local politician, who is now aiming to go from city sheriff to provincial top dog. He’s done enough to win over some of his constituents, but Msimanga never had it all his own way.

Last September, a motion of no confidence was tabled by the African National Congress (ANC) against him. It was the second time within a month where Msimanga’s mayoral position has been put to the vote. For the second time, Msimanga came out on top, despite the vicious political efforts to have him removed.

He was under the cosh following a row over qualifications, after he’d been accused of handing jobs to people who were dangerously “unfit for the job”.

The opposition wanted to give him the “Trollip treatment“, after the DA’s NMB mayor was ousted weeks before. Despite protestations from the ANC and EFF, Solly held on to his job – and now, he’s leaving on his own terms.

What will happen next for the mayor of Tshwane?

The search to appoint a successor is already underway. Msimanga said during his media briefing that he would work in his capacity mayor “through the first two weeks of February” before standing aside.

Through his Twitter account, Solly Msimanga addressed his followers and thanked them for their support over the last few years. Of course, he couldn’t resist tooting his own horn on this one.

“Since we took over, the City received a credit upgrade from Moody’s and was assigned a stable outlook.”

“The achievements and material differences we made in Tshwane have begun to make in the lives of those who explicitly voted the ANC out of government and replaced them with the coalition government will require a strong successor who will carry on this important work.”

Solly Msimanga

This, however, does leave the fate of Tshwane a little uncertain. The DA must now choose a candidate to replace Msimanga and appease their coalition partners in the EFF. Should the red berets feel that the replacement is not someone who fits the bill, they could launch another motion of no confidence this time around.

Msimanga remains hopeful that their left-wing partners will accept whatever candidate takes the reigns, and warned against any efforts to launch a bid alongside the ANC to destabilise the Tshwane chambers:

“I have every confidence that the DA will put forward an outstanding candidate who will carry on with the hard work of rebuilding the City and delivering on our manifesto commitments.

I am hopeful in particular that the EFF will support our mayoral candidate, as they face a clear choice – continue to root out corruption and improve service provision – or hand power back to the corrupt ANC.”