Members of ANC splinter organisation arrested for assault of ANC volunteers

2013-10-18 08:23

Mpumalanga police have arrested three members of a Bushbuckridge-based political party for assault and disruption of an ANC door-to-door campaign last week.

Bushbuckridge Residents Association (BRA) secretary Cleopus Maunye has confirmed the arrested individuals – Alios Sierane (51), Chick Molobela (30) and Eric Mashile (39) – were its members.

The arrests follow the assault of three ANC volunteers at Morolo village after five men disrupted the campaign, which was attended by the party’s national election team members.

Provincial police spokesperson Colonel Leonard Hlathi said the three would apply for bail on Monday.

“We’re still looking for two more suspects. Our witnesses said five men, who claimed to be BRA members, assaulted the ANC volunteers with sticks while they were canvassing,” Hlathi said.

Maunye, however, denied the BRA was behind the disruption.

“It was community members who disrupted that campaign. We’re not surprised that BRA members were arrested because our members are always targeted by police ... there are police officers who are specialising on BRA cases,” he said.

BRA is a splinter organisation formed by former ANC members in 2011.

BRA won seven of the 74 seats in the Bushbuckridge local municipality. Its relationship with the ANC has been acrimonious and violent.

In January, BRA members and residents chased away Premier David Mabuza and his delegation of MECs after accusing them of using government resources to campaign for the ANC.

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