Executive Mayor Herman Mashaba of Johannesburg has circulated a post on Facebook of a violent disruption which occurred at Tuesday evenings’ Integrated Development Plan (IDP) summit at Midrand High School.
According to the report, ANC members disrupted and attacked various individuals including an EFF member who sustained a gash to his head, as well as the chairperson of Ward 112, Andrew Osmond, who was hit with a brick on the back of his head with such force he was concussed and had to be taken to hospital.
“Disgracefully, this attack on our democracy was led by ANC Councillors in the City of Jo’burg,” said Mashaba.
“The City of Jo’burg is left with no option but to lay criminal charges against ANC councillors who were leading this assault on our democracy and fueling the violence,” he said.
Charges will include damage to property and assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
The police will be provided with all relevant footage of the attack and Mashaba said he will ensure that those involved face criminal prosecution.
“It has become clear that the ANC in Johannesburg refuses to accept the democratic outcomes of last year’s local government elections and has resorted to violence and intimidation to prevent the new administration from serving the residents of our city,” Mashaba said.
“I condemn this disgraceful behaviour in the strongest terms and call on ANC Provincial Chairperson, Paul Mashatile, to intervene in this matter and bring an end to the despicable violence perpetrated by his members”.
The IDP summits are a vital component in efforts to ensure proper public consolation, said Mashaba.
“It is clear that the ANC is hell-bent on preventing us from ensuring that the residents of Jo’burg are given an opportunity to raise their concerns with their government” he said.
“At the end of the day, the ANC’s actions have nothing to do with putting the interests of Jo’burg residents first, but rather everything to do with self-interest and arrogance. As the days and months pass, it is clear the ANC is leaderless in Johannesburg as former Mayor, Park Tau, does nothing to end ANC thuggery. His silence remains deafening”.
Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department officers had to remove ANC members from the school hall and lock the doors to ensure the safety of the community members inside. The report circulating alleges ANC members then proceeded to destroy school property including breaking doors and smashing windows.
ANC councillors led a group of about 60 ANC members, placing the lives of an estimated 500 innocent residents at risk. According to the speaker of council, councillor Vasco da Gama, at least ten ANC councillors attended the meeting and did nothing to stop the disruptions. Rather, some ANC councillors aided in escalating the violence as witnessed.
“It is clear the ANC is willing to shed the blood of innocent community members and damage property in its efforts to discredit the democratically elected government in Johannesburg, “ Mashaba said.
ANC councillors in attendance included:
- PR Cllr Mfikoe
- PR Cllr NB Shezi
- Cllr Lamola (ward 110)
- Cllr Pagadi (ward 80)
- Cllr Gololo (ward 133)
- Cllr Makamo (ward 78)
- Cllr Maluleka (ward 79)
- Cllr Motsumi (ward 92)
- Cllr Twala (ward 77)
- Cllr Matsemela (ward 111)
“I again call on the ANC Provincial Chairperson, Paul Mashatile, to take urgent disciplinary action against these individuals. It is alleged the attack was orchestrated by PR councillor Mfikoe and councillors Lemola and Matsemela,” he said.
“In our constitutional democracy, we can never tolerate councillors conducting themselves in a manner that places the lives of innocent residents at risk. I wish to send a clear message to the ANC in Johannesburg: We will not be intimidated. We will continue to serve our residents and bring about the change they demanded in last year’s elections.”
Despite the ANCs efforts to prevent the public engagements from continuing, city officials and community members remained in the hall and ensured that the work of bringing change to the people of Johannesburg continued.
“We will never allow the legitimate work of government to be derailed by thuggery,” Mashaba said.