Johannesburg elects first woman mayor


The city of Johannesburg in South Africa has elected its first woman Mayor, Dr Mpho Phalatse, whose plans include a R20 billion (K1 trillion) investment in the city’s road network.

Phalatse of Democratic Alliance (DA) won the mayoral position on Monday during elections in which she got 144 votes. ANC candidate Mpho Moerane came second with 121 votes.

The new Mayor who has been a councillor since 2016, plans to fix Johannesburg’s public services which have been affected over the years by political instability and recently the Covid-19.

News site, Daily Maverick, reported that Phalatse plans to implement a R20-billion investment in the city’s road network where the current budget is R1.6-billion/year.

Other promises, according to the news site, are to fix water leaks in 24 hours of being reported, to have potholes filled in within 72 hours of being reported and to reduce electricity outages.

Phalatse also promised support for vulnerable residents, including homeless people’s shelters; a food security plan with the private sector and more nurses and more clinics closer to people who need them.

She is the fourth person to hold the position of Mayor of Johannesburg this year: one died of Covid-19; another was killed in a car accident. The incumbent mayor, Mpho Moerane, who had been in office since October is the one who lost to Phalatse on Monday.