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No confidence motion against Mayor

The Democratic Alliance says it is looking into allegations of racism against Swartland Mayor Tijmen van Essen.

According to DA Western Cape provincial leader Bonginkosi Madikizela, the allegations were made by Swartland DA acting constituency chairperson Basil Stanley, citing a July incident.

Stanley has called for a motion of no confidence in the Mayor after he, allegedly during a meeting in Moorreesburg, said “coloured people are not competent to hold leadership positions”. Van Essen has since strongly denied these claims.

In a press release dated 22 November, Madikizela said: “I regarded these allegations as being very serious, and a meeting was subsequently convened involving me, deputy party leader Albert Fritz, provincial chairperson Anton Bredell, Mr Stanley and Mr van Essen. Both parties were given an opportunity to state their case, and Mr Stanley made certain allegations against Mr van Essen, which the latter refuted.

“I then suggested we take the matter further, to the Federal Legal Commission for investigation, as it appeared to be Mr Stanley’s word against Mr van Essen’s. It was Mr Stanley, the complainant, who advised against this. He stated he wanted the party, rather, to mediate, and then was prepared to let the matter go, which both parties shook hands on.

Madikizela said he was “taken aback” at receiving a no-confidence motion from Stanley on Sunday 17 November. “I believe a matter like this must be handled properly, with the necessary sensitivity.” At the time of going to print, the matter was still being discussed at the DA’s Provincial Executive Committee meeting in Cape Town.

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