ANC and ANCYL at odds on Major saga
Following an altercation between a female correctional service warden, Nontle Gomo (42) and ANC Regional Secretary Major Sokopo, which led to the two opening assault charges against each other, both the ANC in the region and ANCYL released a statement in response.
The incident happened on Tuesday 9 October on the grounds of the prison in front of the office of the Southern Cape Commissioner.
On 14 October the ANCYL released a statement saying that it is deeply saddened and disgusted by media reports of the regional secretary of the ANC assaulting a woman.
The statement, issued by ANCYL regional spokesperson Aviwe Mbagu, reads as follows: “ANCYL believes that Major Sokopo is not above processes of the ANC and of the law. We are also calling on the justice system to ensure that the charges against Major Sokopo are thoroughly investigated and the charges be changed from common assault to assault with intention of bodily harm.
“Despite the fact that abuse and violence against women and children are often not reported due to victims’ fear of what is going to happen, statistics of reported and experienced [cases] is high and Western Cape stood in 21,2% before the ANC regional secretary added to the statistics. Southern Cape and George Sub Region, in particular, have witnessed disruptive assaults, rapes and murdering of women and the recent killing of the beautiful Hlompho Mohapi in Herold’s Bay not so long ago has caused an outcry around the region and the country.
“The careless actions by the Regional Secretary, who was supposed to protect women, poses threats to the safety of women”.
ANC Southern Cape Region
In response to the statement by the Youth League, the ANC in the region issued a statement on 15 October that reads: “It is clear that the ANCYL statement reeks of personal attacks and settling of scores between youth league leadership who clearly have not matured above their own indifferences [sic] with ANC leadership in the region. We have further observed with great concern that there are strong orchestrated efforts being made by anti-revolutionary elements who will stop at nothing in discrediting the newly elected leadership of the ANC in the Southern Cape. The ANC in the region is regretfully informed of the unfortunate altercation between Ms. Nontle Gomo and Cde Major Sokopo which has subsequently led to the laying of charges by both parties. We firmly believe that we should allow the law to come to its logical conclusion without the irresponsible influences and illdisciplined utterances made by the ANCYL leadership on social media and other platforms. We remain committed to fighting all forms of abuse against women and condemn it with the contempt it deserves.”
ANC Women’s League
The Women’s League in the region also issued a statement, saying it will do a political investigation before commenting on the issue.
“ANCWL takes note of the news by George Herald of the alleged assault case. We have learned that cases have been lodged by both affected parties. ANCWL is against all forms of abuse against women and children, in particular. We will conduct our political investigation, after which we [will] publish a press release as ANCWL.”