Anger as EFF’s as­sault case against ANC with­drawn

Talk of the Town - - News - TK MTIKI

Although it took less than four min­utes to deal with Nd­lambe Mu­nic­i­pal­ity em­ploy­ees and ANC mem­bers ap­pear­ing in the Port Al­fred mag­is­trate’s court on as­sault charges on Mon­day, it took a warn­ing by mag­is­trate Lin­delwa Figlan for po­lit­i­cal op­po­nents to cease their volatile dis­plays of emo­tion in­side the court.

Seven mu­nic­i­pal em­ploy­ees and ANC mem­bers ap­peared in court in con­nec­tion with the al­leged as­sault of EFF mem­bers dur­ing a protest on June 18 and 19. In the dock were Sibu­siso Zweni, Lu­vuyo Tu­mani, Maradona Swaart­booi, Ju­luka Mafele, Don­ald Zin­quntu, Mbulelo Veto and Good­man Mtatana.

The men in the dock were sup­ported by a large num­ber of mu­nic­i­pal work­ers – from gen­eral work­ers to top of­fi­cials. The court was not big enough to ac­com­mo­date them all, with some sup­port­ers wait­ing out­side singing.

The case was with­drawn pro­vi­sion­ally and dock­ets will be sent to the Di­rec­tor of Pub­lic Prose­cu­tions (DPP) for a fi­nal de­ci­sion.

It also ap­peared that there was a new docket sub­mit­ted which was go­ing to be linked with the pre­vi­ous docket and sub­mit­ted to­gether to the DPP.

The lat­ter was linked to other of­fi­cials who were not men­tioned by name and were also not part of the seven in court. Mu­nic­i­pal em­ploy­ees and ANC mem­bers were thrilled by the court out­come, singing all the way from court on their way back to the mu­nic­i­pal of­fices.

EFF mem­bers who had filed the com­plaint were un­happy.

Speak­ing to TotT be­fore the mu­nic­i­pal work­ers’ case came up, Lo­cal EFF leader Xolisa Runeli had said the sup­port shown by mu­nic­i­pal em­ploy­ees was a pre­tence.

“Even those who are leak­ing the in­for­ma­tion to us are singing the loud­est sup­port. Look at them out­side,” he said.

Lan­guage be­came heated in the court­room be­fore the mag­is­trate en­tered, and con­tin­ued even af­ter she came in. Want­ing to con­tinue where they had left off, EFF and ANC mem­bers chal­lenged each other to set­tle mat­ters out­side the court build­ing.

Some ANC mem­bers la­belled Runeli a “zom­bie” and he re­sponded by call­ing them mon­keys.

Runeli fur­ther boasted about the level of in­tel­li­gence in the EFF, say­ing: “We de­feat you with ideas and ev­ery­thing. Some of you are singing for pro­mo­tions and you want to be seen”.

Runeli also crit­i­cised the pres­ence of mu­nic­i­pal di­rec­tors in court, say­ing it con­tra­dicted the charges laid against him.

Runeli and other EFF mem­bers have also ap­peared in court on charges re­lat­ing to the protest in Camp­bell Street in June.

“They said I in­ter­rupted ser­vice de­liv­ery. Who is in the of­fice now when they are all here? Who is pay­ing for them to be here in court? No! Let me call the ratepay­ers chair­per­son.”

Pic­ture: ROB KNOWLES

SHOW OF SUP­PORT: Nd­lambe Mu­nic­i­pal­ity em­ploy­ees came to the Port Al­fred mag­is­trate’s court on Mon­day to sup­port some fel­low em­ploy­ees and ANC mem­bers who ap­peared in con­nec­tion with al­leged as­sault of EFF mem­bers in a protest in June

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