Shakespeare Arends, African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) PR Councilor joins Knysna’s leading party, the Democratic Alliance (DA) in a coalition agreement with immediate effect.

The coalition agreement with Independent Councillor, Velile Waxa has been terminated, also with immediate effect.

“After re-evaluating our coalition agreement with Cllr Waxa, it was decided to end this coalition. His political outlook is not in line with the policies and values of the DA and we, as Knysna’s leading party, decided that this coalition with Cllr Waxa no longer serves the good of Greater Knysna, and therefore it has been terminated,” explained Knysna Executive Mayor, Eleanore Bouw-Spies.

Arends has been active in the political arena since 1989. During this time he served as the Knysna Chairperson of the then Democratic Party. “Joining the DA in a co-governing agreement is a natural progression for me,” he said.

Bouw-Spies added: “As Cllr Arends was born and raised in Knysna, he understands Greater Knysna communities completely and has always put their needs first. He is a man of integrity and compassion, two attributes that will serve the people of Greater Knysna well.”

Arends replaces Waxa on the mayoral committee as Portfolio Chair of Planning & Integrated Human Settlements.

Many residents know Arends through his role as Assemblies of God pastor. “I have practiced as a pastor in Knysna for the past 35 years and this has offered me valuable insight into the needs of our people,” he said. He added that as a full time councillor in coalition with the leading party he will now be able to have a definite impact on bettering the lives of many.

In closing Bouw-Spies welcomed Arends into the fold and said: “I am in no doubt that this authentic Knysna resident will do well in his new political role and portfolio. We, as the DA are excited to be working alongside such an integral person.”