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New eThekwini Mayor hits the ground running
​Recently inaugurated eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda,
wearing the mayoral chains, stands with former Mayor
Zandile Gumede and Sipho Kaunda who was elected to
the Executive Committee at a special Full Council
meeting on 5 September.
ETHEKWINI Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda has hit the ground running since being elected to office in order to deliver on some of the short term goals he outlined in his inaugural address. This includes meeting with senior City leadership to plot the way forward as well as promoting social cohesion.

He will also be meeting with former Mayor Zandile Gumede and her executive to tap into their experience and understanding of the immediate tasks that need to be undertaken. Mayor Kaunda was inaugurated at a special Full Council meeting on 5 September at the Durban City Hall where Deputy Mayor Belinda Scott along with Speaker Weziwe Thusi were also elected.

Other leadership positions were also filled at the meeting which included the ANC’s vacant Executive Committee positions. The new ANC members include councillors Sipho Kaunda, Thanduxolo Sabelo, Ntokozo Sibiya and Nompumelelo Sithole. Mayor Kaunda and Councillor Scott will also serve on the Executive Committee. Councillor Sibongiseni Mkhize was also announced the Chief Whip of the ANC. Meanwhile, Councillor Yogiswarie Govender filled a vacant DA Executive Committee seat. Since being elected to office, Mayor Kaunda met with senior City leadership to strategise the way forward.

This was one of the promises made in his address to Full Council where he committed to meeting various stakeholders to fast track service delivery. In his address to Full Council, he raised areas of priority to drive a concerted accelerated service delivery approach. This includes developing a turnaround plan to address urgent service delivery needs which involves an improved refuse removal and collection service, dealing with water and electricity cuts and supply, ensuring a proper billing system, clean and good governance, dealing with problem buildings, crime and the enforcement of by-laws and improving the stormwater drainage system. “We will also focus on high investment and drive tourism while we strive to provide a safe, reliable and affordable public transport system.

We have not forgotten about radical socioeconomic transformation and will continue to implement this while promoting unity and social cohesion among residents,” Mayor Kaunda said. Mayor Kaunda has a rich socio-political activism background serving in various leadership roles in both the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) and provincial structures. He obtained his Diploma in Governance and Leadership from the University of South Africa and an Advanced Diploma in Advanced Governance and Public Leadership from the University of Witwatersrand. Mayor Kaunda served as the ward 57 councillor in Inanda from 2000 to 2006 and as a proportional representation councillor in 2006 to 2009.

He has also held the position of ANCYL Provincial Secretary and ANCYL Provincial Chairperson. In 2012 he was elected to the ANC Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) and was assigned the responsibility of serving in the Economic Transformation as well as Peace and Stability sub-committees. In 2018, he was re-elected to the ANC PEC and served as Chairperson of the Economic Transformation Committee. He served on the Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, as well as Community Safety and Liaison committees. His most recent position in the province was that of MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison. 
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