The DA spent R327,400 of ratepayers money to attend a two-day, DA-only “breakaway session” at Spier in Stellenbosch
Reports from within the DA caucus confirm two deeply concerning facts: that this breakaway session was a party political meeting focussing on party political matters largely unrelated to the work of councillors in the City; and that people other than DA City councillors were present.
Even if this information is not accurate, which the ACDP doubts because of the sources they emanate from, this still represents a massive abuse of ratepayers money, benefiting only one party, and that took place outside the City, when alternative catering arrangements should have been made, when a free-for-use City owned venue should have been used and when councillors should have been expected to travel to and from the venue since they all live in the City, rather than being accommodated at almost R2500 per person. The Mayor explained that spending ratepayers money on break-away sessions is legal. Regardless – it’s simply unethical.
The ACDP insists that the DA pay this money back to the City and her ratepayers, or thank the ratepayers for their generosity benefiting only the DA and not all elected public representatives.
The DA refused to pay the money back to the City, and refused to thank the ratepayers for this exorbitant gift. In a separate but related matter, it emerged during the debate, that the ANC also benefited from a similar gift from the ratepayers on 27/28 September – I will try establish the cost of this.