The embattled former mayor of a North West municipality says he is living in fear for his life after he was forcefully removed from office following a burglary, allegedly committed by a group of people he claimed were his fellow ANC leaders.
Afrika Thale, the former mayor of Ramotshere Moiloa local municipality in Zeerust, told The Citizen yesterday he believed the alleged burglary at his offices was orchestrated by premier Supra Mahumapelo.
He alleged Mahumapelo appointed Simon Senna as the new mayor on December 23, just hours after the alleged breakin took place. “My life is in danger but if those people are assassins, they can do whatever they want,” said Thale. “I am going back to work on January 4 and seek a court order to remove them from my office.”
North West police spokesperson Captain Paul Ramoloko confirmed a case of malicious damage to property was opened, but would not provide further details.
Thale said he reported the matter to ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, adding Mantashe promised to attend to it in January. North West ANC spokesperson Bridgette Seokamo dismissed Thale’s allegations against Mahumapelo.
She said Thale was officially recalled and replaced with Senna because he did not participate in many council meetings where service delivery policies were discussed in the past. “We requested Thale to resign a long time ago, but he was not cooperative,” said Seokamo.
“I know nothing about the burglary. We only changed the locks of his office doors because he refused to hand over the keys.”
Thale mobilised a group of other ANC members who disrupted the council meeting after he was removed from office, said Seokamo. The bickering in the troubled municipality emerged less than three months after The Citizen reported that North West ANC secretary Dakota Legoete had allegedly instructed some of his party councillors to remove Thale from office through a motion of no-confidence.
Mantashe and Seena could not be reached for comment.