EFF member accuses party of hypocrisy
THE woman at the centre of a senior EFF leader’s suspension has accused the party of hypocrisy.
Yesterday, the party announced the suspension of Gauteng EFF member of the legislature Patrick Sindane for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend, Lebogang Mogoase.
The alleged assault happened after the funeral of an EFF member in Orlando, Soweto on Saturday.
Sindane and Mogoase have denied the assault happened. Mogoase has not opened a criminal case.
EFF Gauteng acting chairperson Mandisa Mashego said that despite this, the party had placed Sindane on suspension and would institute disciplinary action.
She said: “Senior leaders cannot place the party in disrepute. We guard our reputation jealousy. Whether or not we get a formal complaint from the victim, we have to investigate the facts.”
Mashego said the party had committed itself to fighting sexism and the abuse of women. “If the EFF is to put up a convincing fight against patriarchy, cultural male chauvinism and general violence and abuse against women and children, its efforts and programmes must not be compromised, least of all by its public representatives and any member of the EFF,” Mashego said.
But Mogoase accused Mashego of being a hypocrite. She claims that in August, Mashego’s boyfriend manhandled and poured alcohol on a party volunteer after a funeral.
“Why didn’t she take steps against him? Now that it is Sindane, she is making it out to be a big deal.”
Mogoase said she was angry Mashego didn’t call her to establish the facts of the alleged assault. Mashego said: “The matter is not personal. I do not wish to comment further.”
Over the weekend, Sindane wrote on Twitter that he was taking responsibility for his actions. He asserts the reason he said that was for what he called his unbecoming behaviour after the funeral.
Speaking exclusively to The Star this week, Sindane conceded that he was drunk on Saturday after the funeral.
“I was drunk and started having a heated conversation with my girlfriend, Lebogang Mogoase. We would argue and then stop, and argue some more. After repeated arguments, my girlfriend became emotional, started crying and moved away from where we were sitting,” Sindane explained.
He added that Mogoase, who is also an EFF member, moved towards a car which was parked nearby and people thought she had been hit by him. One EFF member, Sindane added, confronted him about allegedly hitting Mogoase, and the two of them engaged in a physical fight.
“That is what I meant about taking responsibility; as a public representative, I believe fighting in public is not correct, especially because I was intoxicated. I did not lay a hand on my girlfriend,” Sindane said vehemently.
“None of the people who were there can accurately say that I beat her up because I did not,” he stressed.
Mogoase confirmed his version of events to The Star, saying she was “an emotional person”, who cries when she is hurt. Mogoase added that, of the people who were at the “after tears” – a gathering after a funeral usually held in townships – she was the only one who was not drinking as she doesn’t drink anymore for health reasons.
“So, when I tried to break up the fight (between Sindane and the EFF member) and tried to explain that my boyfriend didn’t abuse me, no one was willing to listen because the fight was heated and people were drunk,” Mogoase said.
“He (Sindane) has never beat me up before – there is no reason for me to protect him if he had beaten me up. I haven’t even opened a case,” she emphasised.
On his suspension, Sindane said: “It is only fair that the organisation establishes the facts. It is the ight thing to do.” But Mogoase said she now blames herself for her lover’s suspension. “I feel bad for crying in public. People are now assuming the worst of him. Sindane has never hit me, and if he did I would not defend him.”