Race to the poll is on

SUMMER JACOBS

The DA has long ruled the roost in the Blaauwberg region, but with the departure of veteran Heather Brenner and bitterness in some quarters over the incumbent administration’s way of doing things, opposition parties will be hoping to capitalise at the polls on Wednesday August 3.

Whether they will be able to, only time will tell, but with voter registration in the Western Cape passing the three-million mark for the first time, just fewer than two million of them in the metro, there is clearly a lot of interest in this election, taking place in vastly different political landscape to that of five years ago.

In 2011, the DA took 89.07% of the votes with a 71.63 voter turn-out in Ms Brenner’s Ward 107. Ms Brenner will be replaced by Nicky Rheeder, from Melkbosstrand.

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She will be up against another newcomer to local government in the EFF’s Ntomboxolo Faku, Cope’s Johanna Venter and Leon Alhadeff of the ACDP. It appears the ANC will not field a candidate in the ward as no name appears on the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) list.

Mr Alhadeff is a former chairman of the Table View Ratepayers’ Association (TVRA). Muslim political party, Al-Jama-ah is fielding Mogamad Ganief Ebrahim, and the Freedom Front + is putting its hopes on Dirk Rossouw.

In Ward 4, the DA is swopping out its incumbent, Dr Joy McCarthy, with Tando Jafta, from Summer Greens. In 2011, the DA took 7 330 of the 11 149 votes in this ward. The FF + candidate is Willem Van Zyl. George Van Wyk will represent the EFF, Thandeka Mafungo the ANC and Antoinette Delport the ACDP.

In Ward 23, the DA incumbent Nora Grose will stand again, going up against the ANC’s Hendrik Sackson, the EFF’s Thando Gwele, Cope’s Elizabeth Pekeur, the ACDP’s Mike Channing and Frederika Botha-Rossouw from the FF +.

Ms Grose replaced Marissa Janse Van Vuuren, who mid-way through her term faced misconduct charges and was later let go by the DA (“By-election to be held in Ward 23,” Tabletalk, August 13, 2014). When Tabletalk spoke to Ms Van Vuuren after her victory in 2011, she committed herself to working with residents and “fostering good relationships to get work done.” This clearly didn’t work and shows that a day is a long time in politics.

In Ward 104, an ANC enclave, incumbent Lubabalo Makeleni will stand again. In the previous municipal elections, the ward had the lowest voter turn-out with only 52.68 percent of the 14 296 registered voters, but Mr Makeleni took 6 157 of the total 7 345 votes cast.

This time, he will be challenged by Xolani Cekiso from the the EFF (“EFF guns for Dunoon,” Tabletalk, May 11) as well as Mavis Mafana-Matomane from Cope, the DA’s Zola Bisholo, the ACDP’s Zweli Tukayi and Misha-Lane Schoeman from the FF +.

Municipal demarcation has created a new Ward, 113, in Blaauwberg. This is where the DA will now field Dr McCarthy, who will be up against the ANC’s Unathi Nocanda, Cope’s Carolina Scott, the ACDP’s Kelly Lee Rau, Stephen Stauch for the FF + and Andrew Pullen from the EFF. This new ward includes Flamingo Vlei, Sunridge, West Riding and Killarney Gardens.

Ward 5, which is outside the Blaauwberg region, but within Tabletalk’s distribution area, is where DA councillor Helen Carstens has been retained. This is a ward where the DA once secured 97 percent, the highest number of votes – countrywide – when now member of Parliament James Vos was the candidate (“DA romps to victory,” Tabletalk, May 25, 2011).

It includes the suburbs of Bothasig and Edgemead. Here the ANC is fielding Sthembiso Nguqu, the EFF has Zamikhaya Kina, Donovan van Niekerk represents the FF +, Shaun Evans represents the ACDP, while Carmen Kleinsmith will be the Coloured Voice candidate in this ward.

Bernadette Le Roux, the DA councillor in Ward 55 is also retiring. The DA is replacing her with newcomer Fabian Ah-Sing who posted on Facebook on Thursday June 30 that: “We’re determined to keep our ward a DA ward.”

He will be up against veteran politician Farouk Cassim, a former IFP member of Parliament. The Century City resident later joined Cope, but then retired and has now made a bid for local government.

Still with Cope, he will also contest five other wards across the city, including Mfuleni, Kensington, Mowbray, Claremont and Athone. He identified crime, abuse of drugs, joblessness, traffic congestion, inadequate sports and recreational facilities as problems in the city.

The ACDP will field Russell Mclaren, a Table View accountant. The ANC’s candidate is Xolile Mangele, and the FF + candidate is Gavin Stanbridge, who will also contest Ward 51, Langa .

– Additional reporting Karen Pretorius.