Municipal communications spokesperson Kupido Baron issued this statement in reaction to front page headlines in the Weekend Post that stated “Make white people live in shacks‘”with a strap line saying; “Bay Mayor Fihla agrees with UDM Councillor Bobani that ‘mansions’ be re-allocated“.
In his statement, Baron said;
Mayor Benson Fihla, affectionately known as Oom Ben, agreed with an opposition party leader that radical change is required.
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor Benson Fihla, affectionately known as Oom Ben, voiced his agreement with an opposition party leader that radical change is required to empower the black majority in the country. This statement was made in the context of black economic empowerment for the common good and not to exclude others.
This is contrary to the claim, published in Weekend Post that this mature political leader agreed with UDM leader Mongameli Bobani that “white people must be removed from their mansions to live in shacks, while black people are moved into their lavish homes”.
This rousing statement can be attributed to Bobani during his response to the Executive Mayor’s address that called for a greater emphasis to reconnect with residents to restore faith in government. Mayor Fihla emphasised that inclusive growth of our economy should take centre stage and that creative ideas are needed to ensure that more diverse crowds attend national pride days.
Oom Ben, a struggle veteran and ANC parliamentarian since 1994, before being deployed to the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality in 2013, brought political and administrative stability to the region with the able assistance of Deputy Executive Mayor Chippa Ngcolomba.
Speaker of Council, Maria Hermans (ANC), reminded Bobani that there are no white or black areas as people can live in any suburb of their choice.
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