The Port Elizabeth High Court has reserved judgment on Mongameli Bobani’s last-ditch effort to get his job back, until Thursday, 19 December.
Judge Ntsepe says she will give her ruling on the 19th of December. #sabcnews
— Jayed-Leigh Paulse (@JayedLeigh) December 13, 2019
Bobani vs NMB: Did the axed mayor have a case to plead?
On Friday, after intense heads of argument from both parties, Judge Lisa Ntsepe noted that time was needed to consider the merits of the case and weigh the eligibility of the Nelson Mandela Bay council’s vote to axe Bobani.
The application was brought to the High Court after the NMB council unanimously voted Bobani out of power. At the time, Bobani’s relationship with coalition partners had soured.
Members of the EFF and ANC had described him as a “loose cannon” and a “madman” hell-bent on dismantling “the entire executive structure of the municipality”.
The mayor approached the court, claiming that the axing was gone about unlawfully. He criticised the council for going ahead with a motion that:
- did not have a city manager; and
- that was not on the agenda.
Acting City Manager, Nobuntu Mpongwana, joined Bobani in the court application, claiming that she too was unlawfully removed from her position.
Interestingly, though, Mpongwana had left the council and tendered her resignation shortly before the motion was voted on.
Based on the merits, what outcome is most likely?
The latter was Judge Ntsepe’s biggest concern. Mpongwana had tendered her resignation, left the council, yet she was next to Bobani, claiming that