A DA proportional list councillor has been arrested for armed robbery in Hillbrow, Johannesburg.
Police spokesperson Captain Musa Shihambe told News24 on Thursday the man had been charged with business robbery as well as the possession of an unlicenced firearm and ammunition.
Shihambe said police officers patrolling Pretoria and Catherine streets on Wednesday spotted a suspicious-looking Mercedes with three men inside.
Upon searching the car, they found two pistols, ammunition and an unknown amount of cash.
The councillor, Shihambe said, was the driver of the car.
He said the officers also found numerous DA shirts in the boot of the car.
Employees of a nearby Pep store approached the officers and told them the men had just robbed their store, Shihambe said.
They were taken in for questioning and then detained.
The men were charged and would appear in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on Friday, Shihame said.
DA Gauteng provincial leader John Moodey said the accused had been suspended with immediate effect and disciplinary action would be taken when the case concluded.
“The DA will remove any public representative from office if they are found guilty of wrongdoing, regardless of their position.”
Speaking to News24, Moodey said: “The police should do their work … he has to defend himself in a court of law. The law must follow its course and he must face the consequences.”
Meanwhile, the ANC in the West Rand said it was “shocked” by the arrest.
In a statement released on Thursday, its regional secretary, Sanele Ngweventsha, said: “While we are grappling with high levels of violent crime as a country, a person who is supposed to be a public representative is implicated in such a heinous crime.
“We call for the immediate removal of the culprit because a person charged with such a serious and violent crime is not fit to hold public office, this DA councillor is allegedly associated with suspects linked to armed robbery and murder,” he said.