George Democratic Alliance (DA) councillor, pastor Melvin Roelfse, is currently being investigated by the Pacaltsdorp police for defamation, following a Facebook post on the page Rosedale Staan Saam.
Roelfse is the ward councillor of Rosedale and a part of Pacaltsdorp (ward 14). The complainant is a ward committee member of ward 14, Charleen Titus, of Rosedale.
Titus is upset about Roelfse’s alleged remarks about her wig, alleged relationships and her property.
Roelfse told the George Herald he had not yet heard from the police and would therefore not comment on the matter.
Asked whether the matter was being investigated by the speaker, municipal spokesperson Chantèl Edwards-Klose said that the office of the speaker, Gerrit Pretorius, had not yet received any complaint about Roelfse to investigate.
Southern Cape police spokesperson Captain Malcolm Pojie confirmed that an investigation was under way.
“Once the docket has been fully investigated and the suspect’s statement has been obtained, the docket will be submitted to the NPA [National Prosecuting Authority] for a decision. No arrests have been made,” said Pojie.
George DA constituency chief Geordin Hill-Lewis said he was unaware of the incident.
“There will be many temptations on Facebook from opponents to lure us into fights and arguments. The election is won and lost in the streets and communities, and not on Facebook,” he said.
The Facebook posts
According to Titus, she was traumatised after the incident.
“I won the VD (voting district) in Rosedale on 11 November last year with the by-elections,” said Titus.
“Roelfse garnered the most votes from Pacaltsdorp. There has always been a squabble between us, but now he has taken it to another level.”
Titus described Roelfse’s behaviour as inappropriate for a pastor.
“I’ve been a community worker in Rosedale for 11 years. It all started when someone thanked me on Facebook for what I do for the community,” she said.
“I arranged for someone at the housing office to address the Rosedale squatter camp community about the registration process for housing. Some of the people’s application forms were incorrect and they could have made corrections.”
“Roelfse then spat bile on Facebook and said a lot of untrue and ugly things about me, such as that I am not the legal owner of my own house, that I have indecent relationships, take food out of children’s mouths, and that I wear a wig.
Titus said she is not a Facebook user, but heard about the comments from the people who are on the social media platform.
She opened the case on 30 May.
The day before the case was opened, Roelfse took to Facebook in his defence against “heavy attacks” on his integrity.
“I now know what Elijah felt when Jezebel released her voice against the man of God…yet instead of cowering I attacked like a lion in me … and I apologise to any person that I have hurt when I lost my cool for a moment of weakness… and said things which I should not have said in the first place… But I am first to say that I am sorry…”
Read his full post below:
This article was translated from Afrikaans