Dear Knysna Mayor Mark Willemse
Your first day as the Mayor of Knysna is the anniversary of the Great Knysna Fire. Houses burnt, people died… but the grass grew again. I’m asking you to grow flowers where only thorns have been found in the DA’s political garden since 2011. Nature knows how to respond to fire but us humans battle to react appropriately to corruption. One of the main challenges is that the gardeners were living in Cape Town which was too far to run the hosepipe to Knysna.
I’ve long been persecuted for exposing corruption. Sadly, you participated in allowing that to happen. We now know from independent investigations that I was right about the illegal funding of Knysna Tourism (which adds up to tens of millions now), the illegal appointment of Director Dawie Adonis, the illegal contracting of Fran Kirsten, the illegal ISDF tender, the use of Public funds for personal legal fees etc. You are also in possession of the forensic report I gave you regarding alleged graft involving your fellow Eden Councillor, Rowan Spies. You just got rid of his ‘wife’ as Knysna Mayor. Now its time to address him too.
You’re well aware that your DA ran a propaganda campaign against me that falsely labelled me as a sociopath and child abuser. One of your fellow councillors, still in office, composed a fraudulent psychiatric diagnosis and admitted it as evidence. It’s hard for me to ignore that you allowed these things to happen, that you served politics instead of our town.
But now that you’ve greater power as Mayor, and possibly a limited time in which to act (if the DAFedEx gets involved), I’m asking you to be bold, quick and especially loud through the media!
Honest politicians protect whistleblowers and fight crime. Call for a Special Council Meeting that lists known corruption, ensuring that a commission of inquiry. And that must include investigating Speaker Georlene Wolmarans who traded her duty and impartiality for cover-up!
It may have been one year but Knysna still burns inside. Find out what happened to the donations, how emergency services were allocated, and punish the ex-Knysna Fire Chief for intimidation and false investigation.
In your first statement to Knysna, admit that the DA failed us but that you are going to make the DA’s promises blue again – good governance, austerity, transparency and open doors.
My door is open. Fly to meet me. Please don’t make the mistake you know your last two mayors made.
Elrick van Aswegen, or Ricky as we know you, I’m hoping you’re reading this letter too. As the new Deputy Mayor, you need to be the rock for Mark. You have more experience in that Council than any other. You need to put it to good use. Grab a spade and fertilise good intentions.
Make Knysna grow!