Tru­man Prince de­nies DA claim of in­cit­ing vi­o­lence

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - TSHEGO LEPULE

BEAUFORT West’s former mayor Tru­man Prince claims he was a “per­fect gen­tle­man” dur­ing a chaotic coun­cil meet­ing which saw the DA call­ing for dis­ci­plinary ac­tion against him for in­cit­ing vi­o­lence.

The DA’s con­stituency head in the area, Sharna Fer­nan­dez, ac­cused mem­bers of the ANC, in­clud­ing Prince, of dis­rupt­ing a coun­cil meet­ing last week which ended in a fist fight.

She said that dur­ing the meet­ing, Prince rose to re­quest ad­di­tional items to be added to the agenda, and when DA mem­bers ob­jected, chaos erupted.

“Af­fi­davits from DA coun­cil­lors and mem­bers re­veal that Prince had fur­ther de­manded that an ANC re­gional sec­re­tary read out a pe­ti­tion in coun­cil.

“As the re­gional sec­re­tary is not a mem­ber of coun­cil, he was not granted a speak­ing turn, but was re­quested to sub­mit his pe­ti­tion to coun­cil in­stead. At this point, ANC mem­bers in the gallery be­came ag­gres­sive and in­ci­dents of as­sault took place. Prince be­gan en­cour­ag­ing vi­o­lence by yelling ‘Sisi moer haar! Ek sê moer haar!’”

Fer­nan­dez claimed Prince’s ut­ter­ances in­cited vi­o­lence.

But Prince said he was a “per­fect gen­tle­man” on that day and, “for the first time in his life”, he kept out of trou­ble.

He said he rose only to ask that ev­i­dence he had ob­tained re­lated to al­le­ga­tions that DA coun­cil­lor Oc­to­ber Haar­voor put in false claims for trav­el­ling ex­penses be handed over.

Prince, who has since laid fraud charged with the po­lice over the al­le­ga­tions, said the DA was more con­cerned about his be­hav­iour than that of its own coun­cil­lors.

“Th­ese so-called dis­rup­tions did not come from me. My in­ten­tion was to have the ev­i­dence I had gath­ered sur­round­ing the ir­reg­u­lar claims sub­mit­ted by Mr Haar­voor to the coun­cil,” he said.

“I then re­quested the Speaker if we could read them and I un­der­stood when she said we couldn’t, but she had agreed that I could hand them over, but then Noel Con­sta­ble stood up and said this mat­ter was for an­other time.

“That was when peo­ple started swear­ing at each other, and oth­ers fought. That was when the Speaker asked for a five-minute ad­journ­ment, but when we came back, she re­fused to take them, and that was when fight­ing started.

“And for the first time in my life, I was a gen­tle­man and did not en­gage in any ill-dis­ci­pline. The DA has al­ways been quick to look at me as a trou­ble­maker, and even when I dis­ap­point them they find some way to try and have me dis­cred­ited.”

Prince said the DA should rather con­cen­trate on mak­ing sure it strengthens re­la­tion­ships with the peo­ple of Beaufort West.

The DA won the mu­nic­i­pal­ity and gov­erns it through a coali­tion agree­ment with the Ka­roo Demo­cratic Force after last year’s lo­cal elec­tions.

“They will be very sur­prised when they lose power. There is a strong anti-DA vibe in Beaufort West and it is only a mat­ter of time be­fore they lose the mu­nic­i­pal­ity,” he added.

Fer­nan­dez said Prince’s ut­ter­ances showed his in­abil­ity to ac­cept hav­ing lost power in the mu­nic­i­pal­ity.

“Tru­man needs to start act­ing like the sea­soned politi­cian he says he is and not throw tantrums each time he does not get his way, and al­low the DA gov­ern­ment to get on with the busi­ness of gov­ern­ing and re­build­ing the area,” she said.


‘PER­FECT GEN­TLE­MAN’: Tru­man Prince

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