Sacked IFP councillor Mzobanzi Ntuli would have taken 300 years to eradicate the housing backlog in Johannesburg if his current delivery rate is anything to go by.
This was the view of EFF leader in Johannesburg Musa Novela yesterday after mayor Herman Mashaba showed Ntuli the door for poor performance. Ntuli became the fourth member of the mayoral committee to be sacked by Mashaba in 20 months since the DA-led coalition administration took office.
Novela said Ntuli presided over one of the “most underperforming departments” in Johannesburg.
“We do respect the mayor’s prerogative to choose who’s in his executive, but the housing department had only managed to build 1089 houses in the 2017/18 financial year, while the city [of Johannesburg] has a backlog of 300000,” Novela said.
He added: “This department, at its current pace, would have taken 300 years to eradicate the current housing backlog in Johannesburg, and our backlogs grow rapidly as 120000 [people] migrate to the city annually.”
He said the department was forced to return the bulk of its conditional grant back to the National Treasury due to nonspending.
“This department was in intensive care unit and it now looks like the doctors have given up on it.”
Mashaba announced that he has replaced Ntuli with ACDP councillor Meshack van Wyk.
In a statement, the mayor indicated that the housing department was inherited “performing poorly and with a legacy of corruption” from the ANC.
“Despite former MMC Ntuli’s best performance, the [housing] department’s performance has not improved… it is going to require a different leadership to effect a turnaround of this critical function in the city,” Mashaba said.
Ntuli could not be reached for a comment yesterday.
IFP Gauteng leader Bonginkosi Dlamini said: “We are disappointed in Mashaba’s unilateral decision to remove Ntuli. It goes against the spirit of the coalition.”
Dlamini added: “Mashaba knows it’s not the IFP that has failed in this instance, the truth is the mayor imposed a weak head of the department which made things worse in that department.”