Pretoria – Former Tshwane utility services MMC, Abel Tau, yesterday quit as the DA regional chairperson and has his eyes set on winning the metro for his new political home.
Tau has joined The People’s Dialogue, established by former Joburg mayor Herman Mashaba.
Speaking exclusively to the Pretoria News, Tau accused the DA of not being serious about governing Tshwane or even South Africa.
He said he was willing to participate in building Mashaba’s political party into an alternative for South Africans.
“We will start by winning Tshwane (during next year’s local government elections),” he said.
His resignation from the DA was announced by Mashaba, who praised him for not being after positions, but having joined his party as an ordinary member.
“He brings important skills in co-ordinating our ground structures in Tshwane, which will be invaluable.”
Tau, who was born and raised in Soshanguve, previously served as Tshwane acting mayor.
He was one of the front runners for the position of the party’s mayoral candidate before the City was placed under administration in March.
The position was eventually won by Randall Williams, who was the MMC for economic development and spatial planning under former mayor Solly Msimanga.
Tau, however, criticised the appointment, accusing Williams of overseeing the controversial contracts involving GladAfrica engineering firm and Aerocon when he was MMC.
He refuted suggestions that he resigned because he was bitter after the DA overlooked him for the mayoral position.
“I am not bitter that I was overlooked for the mayoral position.
“If I believed that the DA candidate was a better candidate, for starters, I would definitely have supported that.
“I joined the party knowing its processes, but the processes have to be fair and equitable. And they have to be beyond reproach.
“I don’t think the candidate can do a better job than me and that’s a fair assessment of where I stand.
“But, I am not leaving the party for that,” Tau said.
He said he left the DA because he never wanted to be a party to bringing the City to its knees.
“As things stand, the City doesn’t have money to pay employees what is due to them. And that’s because the DA is complicit. The City cannot deliver services because the DA is complicit.
“The City killed five kids in Soshanguve and on top of that it hasn’t done anything (to ensure) that it doesn’t kill other kids. I can’t live with myself and I can’t live with my conscience knowing that I didn’t do anything,” he said.
The five children in Soshanguve were crushed to death by a high-mast lighting ring, which fell on them while playing around it in 2017.
DA provincial leader John Moodey said the party noted Tau’s resignation and respected “his rights to make this decision although we believe it is very misguided to say the least”.
“We wish him well in his future endeavours. The DA will continue its programme of delivering services to the residents of Tshwane, the people who elected us. We will continue in the greater project to deliver an open opportunity society for all in South Africa,” he said.