No march on Monday, declares city
Ehrenreich plans to make Cape ungovernable – De Lille
AS THE city moves to clamp down on plans for another march into the CBD on Monday, Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille has accused Cosatu provincial secretary Tony Ehrenreich of promoting a campaign to make the city ungovernable. Ehrenreich has denied this. Plans for an alternative march into the city on Monday look set to be thwarted too, with the authorities refusing permission because the group organising it has links to the protest that degenerated into looting of street vendors last month.
Late yesterday however, city media manager Priya Reddy said they could not be absolutely sure there would be no march on Monday.
“(We) will provide support to the South African Police Services, who are the lead agents in the case of an illegal march,” she said.
Meanwhile, De Lille launched a stinging attack on Ehrenreich, also a city councillor, in a statement, accusing him of arranging rail transport for the would-be marchers.
The CBD virtually became a ghost town yesterday morning as residents and workers prepared for a repeat of last month’s violence, but traders slowly returned when it appeared the march would indeed not go ahead.
The march was cancelled after the city obtained an interdict to halt it. De Lille declared yesterday that she would ask city council Speaker Dirk Smit to investigate Ehrenreich’s conduct.
She said Ehrenreich had ensured Metrorail made free trains available to would-be marchers, even though he knew a march would be illegal.
“Councillor Ehrenreich reportedly went further, to ensure there would be Cosatu marshals present, thereby actively and directly assisting the would-be marchers to break the law.
“This proves definitively that Mr Ehrenreich and Cosatu are active participants in promoting the ‘ungovernability’ campaign.”
De Lille added that the city obtained the interdict because “there was a reasonable expectation there would have been violence.”.
Ehrenreich said he had arranged trains for protesters because Cosatu supported the rights of people to protest for “urgent housing and sanitation”.
He also denied people marching to town had “anything to do with ungovernability”.
At the time the transport was arranged, Ehrenreich added, the planned march was not yet illegal.
“The fact that the city says it’s illegal doesn’t make it illegal. Only a court can make it illegal,” he said, explaining that the interdict had been obtained only after the trains had been organised.
Cosatu wanted to help people to get to town to hold a “disciplined and non-violent protest”.
Ehrenreich said of the mayor last night: “She’s being silly and making wild allegations. She’s trying to put drama into the issue.”
He added that he had arranged the transport in his capacity as Cosatu provincial secretary, and not as a councillor.
ACCUSATIONS: Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille and Cosatu provincial secretaryTony Ehrenreich.