In a statement on Wednesday, the DA announced they would lay criminal charges against two ANC ward councillors from the Free State for violently disrupting the Gangster State book launch in Sandton yesterday.
These councillors could be “clearly seen” in pictures which have been widely shared on social media, the party’s Free State premier candidate, Patricia Kopane, said.
The Citizen has subsequently investigated the images and our sources in the Free State have agreed that they do indeed show the councillors identified by the DA.
Kopane pointed out that the “thuggish act”, if indeed the councillors participated in it, was in direct contravention of the Municipal Systems Act that regulates the conduct of the councillors.
According to the act, councillors are expected to perform their duties in good faith (or with a desire to act fairly towards others), honestly, transparently and in the best interests of the municipality.
The ANC, and even its secretary-general, have distanced themselves from the actions of the protesters, after they interrupted the book launch and damaged the store.
However, the DA alleges that Magashule must have been behind the crowd’s appearance.
The DA said they would be writing to the Metsimaholo speaker, Thabo Mabasa, to lodge a complaint and ask him to take action against them for bringing the council into disrepute.
“We will demand that the speaker enforce the code of conduct by requesting the speaker to write to the Free State Cogta MEC, Oupa Khoabane, to suspend or remove the councillors from office.
“Their behaviour is a clear indication of how far the ANC is willing to go in silencing the truth. They are desperately trying to hide the unmasking of the alleged state captor Ace Magashule, who brought the Free State to its knees. This is consistent with Magashule’s thinking, that disrupting the launches and burning the book will deflect people’s focus from the explosive allegations of state capture.
“This also shows that Magashule is still in control of this province and is still using his mafia-like tactics to run his criminal syndicate.
“The DA supports freedom of expression. We will fight fiercely to protect that right and encourage people to use it. If Magashule is sufficiently aggrieved by the revelations contained in the book, we encourage him to prove his innocence and make use of legal channels and clear his name in the court of law.
“Resorting to violence and causing disruption is a tacit admission that he has something to hide.”
The DA said that if Magashule disputed Pieter-Louis Myburgh’s account, he needed to challenge it before a court law, instead of deploying his “thugs to terrorise citizens of South Africa”.