‘No Confidence’ in Kouga’s mayor’ was not voted on owing to ‘technical hitch’

By Bev Mortimer

The ‘Motion of No Confidence in the Kouga mayor, Horatio Hendricks , could not be voted on yesterday owing to just a technicality – only because it did not recommend that any action emanate from the motion!
The Motion ‘No confidence in Kouga’s mayor, Horatio Hendricks’, was tabled at a special Council meeting yesterday morning, 20 March, but the mayor, who was present at the meeting, escaped a vote of ‘No Confidence’ in him, due to a technicality that made the Speaker, clr Brenton Williams, rule for Council ‘Not to vote’ on ‘A Vote of ‘No Confidence’.

It was stated at the meeting the technicality was “Council could only note and acknowledge the item, and could not vote on the matter as it did not recommend that any action emanate from the motion”. Using his right ‘Not to Vote’ owing to a technicality, Speaker Williams ruled that, because opposition parties did not include in their vote of ‘No Confidence’ a ‘Recommendation’ the meeting was abruptly stopped and ended without a vote.

Kouga mayor, Horatio Hendricks

The news has caused shock, dismay and a lack of trust from many in Kouga, who are not DA supporters. They have taken to the media and online to express their dismay and allege there must be some reason to prevent the vote.
But straight after the meeting yesterday the Kouga municipal PR sent a press release to all media saying the DA “sees this motion as nothing but cheap politics from a party that has run out of ideas.”
Then the press release went on to give the lengthy list of things the DA considers praiseworthy, which the DA has already sent to the same media and which are regularly posted online and in message groups , and can be found on the KM FB page. These were again lauded in the PR media release yesterday which finally ended with the Deputy Mayor, Hattingh Bornman, saying they (the DA) “have full confidence in the Hendricks to lead the municipality.”

The African National Congress (ANC) says it submitted the motion of ‘No Confidence’ in Kouga’s mayor in terms of rule 29 of the Standing Rules and Orders,
The motion was submitted by clr Vuyani Zana and seconded by Councillor Bazil Human. Commenting, NC Chief Whip in Kouga, Vuyani Zana, said terms of the ‘Rules of Order ‘when there are two opposing views on an issue (such as this one ‘Motion of no Confidence in mayor Horatio Hendricks’ , especiallly and in particular for a sensitive issue like a vote of ‘No Confidence’, one must be able to vote for an issue.
“But to our surprise and dismay, the Speaker just ended the meeting without having to engage us on the vote because we did not vote, and we were supposed to vote on the issue. That speaker must be subjected to the Rules and Ethics Committee where his conduct will be investigated because we feel as the ANC that he’s being partisan and also he’s being biased because there are two different rules that he is using in the council: one that deals with councillors of the ANC and then there is leniency on councillors of the DA.
“This ending a motion without voting for it is a surprise. We don’t know who advised him that he should do that, but it is wrong.
“We are threatened by the Chief Whip of council that there are people who must be investigated for taking issues to the media. Where else must we go to inform our communities about the wrongs that are happening in Kouga?”

Here is the Motion Of No Confidence in full:
“In terms of the Municipal Systems Act the Executive Mayor has a responsibility to ensure smooth running of the institution That he took an Oath to abide, honour, adhere, defend, and respect the Constitution of the Republic and all Acts and Regulations governing Local Government. Equally, that he will adhere and respect the Code of Conduct of Councillors as well as the Standing Rules ofOrder of Council. Below is the list of transgressions committed by the Executive Mayor which contrast with the above-mentioned documents:

  1. Nepotism:
    That the Executive Mayor has always been consistent in ensuring that his daughter
    excels in the ranks of Kouga Local Municipality.
    1.1 That during Covid-19 his daughter benefitted as a volunteer because of this there was an outcry across Kouga.
    1.2 That his daughter was appointed as a Ward Assistant of Ward 12 whilst residing in Ward 15 this move was in questionable as the Advert was explicit that THE APPLICANT MUST BE A RESIDENT IN THE WARD WHERE THE POSITION IS and this was contrary to the advert.
    1.3 That a position Auxiliary Officer was advertised with clear requirements inter alia.
    That the applicant must have two (2) years’ experience in local government in the case of the Executive Mayor’s daughter she doesn’t have such and does not meet the set requirement.
    1.4. I’m of the view that the Executive Mayor had a direct influence for the appointment of his daughter as a qualifying incumbent was not even considered as she only had advantage over the daughter of the Executive Mayor
  2. Inteferences:
    2.1 During December 2022, the Executive Mayor went to the Traffic Department in Humansdorp and demanded his daughter be allowed to write Learners License without prior appointment for such.
    2.2 When the officials refused to accede to the demand by the Executive Mayor, it is alleged that he threatened to dismiss the officials in question.
    2.3 Its confirmed that ultimately his daughter set for the Learners License Test but failed.
    2.4 That video footage and or recordings can be accessed on this transgression by the Executive Mayor.
    The conduct of the Executive Mayor is a direct interference and is in direct contravention of
    Section 12 of the Code of Conduct for Councillors. His conduct equally constitutes abuse of power and position by the Executive Mayor
  3. Decisions without a Council Resolution:
    3.1 That the Executive Mayor unilaterally embarked on negotiation for a monetary settlement with former Director Corporate & Digital Services without a council resolution.
    3.2 That it be noted when asked in a council meeting to reveal the amount of the settlement on record the Executive Mayor refused to give detail sighting a so – called confidentiality clause.
    3.3 That it be noted the Executive Mayor had no mandate nor powers to negotiate on behalf of council.
    3.4 That it be noted council is the employing body and the Executive Mayor does not have rights to withhold or hide information from council.
    The above transgressions committed by the Executive Mayor Clr Horatio Hendricks are a direct violation of both the Standing Rules of Order of Council and the Code of Conduct for Councillors. His actions are equivalent to bringing the municipality into disrepute
    Due to the above reflection, I table this motion of NO CONFIDENCE against the Executive Mayor Councillor Horatio Hendricks.
    Speaker, because of the urgency of the issue, I herewith request you to call a Special Council meeting to address this motion.”


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