ActionSA slammed the ANC-EFF coalition government in Johannesburg for their decision to seek approval for an R2bn Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) loan, which they had previously rejected from the opposition benches. This news is according to Sowetan LIVE. The DA-led multiparty coalition failed twice last year to convince councillors to approve the loan, which would have improved the city’s liquidity position.
Funzi Ngobeni, the ActionSA Joburg caucus leader, accused the ANC-EFF coalition of hypocrisy, stating that the move exposes the extent to which the government of the local unity coalition is willing to compromise the best interests of residents for political expediency. He added that the loan would have formed part of the city’s funding plan for the medium-term capital budget the council approved in May 2022 and intended to strengthen service delivery.
However, Finance MMC Dada Morero defended his government’s decision to bring up the loan again, saying that after they only took office, they realised the city was in a dire financial standing with only R400m in its bank account. He claimed that the DA had been hiding this information from the people of Joburg and that the loan was necessary to alleviate the city’s financial crisis.
Despite criticism from the opposition, Morero remained confident that the “government of local unity” coalition has the support of 140 councillors and that the report would go through. In a council meeting on Thursday, the city will deliberate the R2bn loan motion, among other items.
Ngobeni questioned the coalition’s decision, asking why the loan was not good for the city in December and what makes it suitable this week. He also pointed out that only four months remained before the end of the city’s financial year. Therefore, the city would only be able to repay the loan after the end of the financial year, as required by the Municipal Finance Management Act.