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Parks Tau humbled by mayoral re-nomination

The African National Congress’ (ANC) Johannesburg Mayor Parks Tau says he’s humbled by the confidence the ruling party has shown in him by nominating him again asmayoral candidate.

He is the only one of the incumbents in the three hotly-contested metros in Gauteng, who has been re-nominated as mayoral candidate.

Tau says he’s happy that he has the opportunity to continue with spatial transformation to ensure that people live closer to their work places.

“By resolving the spatial issues, you’re able to resolve the social issues in your country. Cities that are more spatially integrated create better opportunities for inclusivity in their cities, therefore implementation of the corridors of freedom. Of course there are issues that are looking at youth development, it remains a priority. We’re leading in terms of youth development in the City of Johannesburg. The Vulindlela eJozi programme is critical to creating access to opportunities for our young people in the city.”

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga says the ANC’s decision to retain Tau as its mayoral candidate for the City of Johannesburg is a safe choice.

He says the governing party could not afford to take any gambles in the country’s financial capital.

Tau is the only incumbent in the three hotly-contested metros of Tshwane, Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni in Gauteng, who has been re-nominated as mayoral candidate for the local government elections.

In light of the Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) threat in the province, Mathekga says Tau’s candidacy is sensible.

“There’ve been problems that he managed to arrest; the billing system is one of those problems. And he seems to be quite present on the ground. He seems to be leading a very stable council. So for that reason you could say he has performed fairly well. I mean the city is also being rated above the national rating, by ratings agencies. Which means the city is actually a place to invest. Another important factor here is that you wouldn’t want to destabilise such a critical area such as the City of Johannesburg.”

However, DA caucus leader in the City of Johannesburg, Vasco Da Gama, says there’s very little to celebrate.

“The highlight in the city was obviously the Rea Vaya improvements, obviously the buses and the Rea Vaya lanes to Soweto. And the new improvements going to Alexandra. But I think the failures throughout the city are much bigger. Pikitup is one of them, the issues around City Power, obviously related to Eskom, those are the biggest failures around the city.”

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