Twenty days after being officially installed as the mayor for the City of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga has already shaken things up in the capital city’s council.
Here are 5 things Msimanga has taken action on:
1. Banning blue light brigade
Msimanga said the days of government officials criss-crossing the capital city with police escorts flashing blue lights are over.
“Blue lights will be a thing of the past in this city. The only person allowed to have blue lights will be the president of the country and nobody else. Gone are the days where elected public officials think they are VIPs. The VIPs in this city will be the residents,” he said.
2. No more luxury cars
Msimanga said he would putting an immediate stop to all purchasing or leasing of luxury cars for politicians, including himself.
“I will not allow public money to be spent on luxury cars, while our people struggle for services, houses and jobs.
“No more luxury cars will be bought or leased under my government. A Hyundai i20 or Toyota Corolla can do the same job for a politician as an expensive sedan.”
3. Overseas trips
Msimanga also put a moratorium on all international travel for politicians and officials of the metro, saying those looking to go on trips should submit applications to the mayoral committee for cost-benefit analysis, with each request treated on its merits.
4. No more parties
Msimanga put a stop to all inaugural parties and catered inaugural events for Tshwane’s new executive, including celebratory dinners and lunches which he said only benefited politicians and not the public.
“This new government in Tshwane has stopped the spending of exorbitant amounts on food and parties for politicians. We must serve the people‚ not party with public funds‚” he said.
5. City Hall
Msimanga says he is determined to bring to book those responsible for creating what he calls “Nkandla 2.0”, referring to wasteful expenditure on renovations of the Pretoria City Hall.
“It’s quite shocking that R90m later, we have nothing but another version of the Nkandla debacle where money has been spent, but when you look at what has happened, it’s actually a shame.”
Msimanga has since laid corruption charges against three high-ranking officials of the previous regime over the renovations at City Hall.