ANC factions fighting over posts

2016-03-31 06:00
 Sandla Mashiyi, Nolusindiso Mofingxani, Bonisile Ntlola, Mzwanele Jokani, Jackson Ndamane, Xolane Mlisana and Xolani Madela, community leaders are fighting the process underway for nominating candidate for ward councillor in Lower Crossroads.       PHOTOs: mbongi maseko

Sandla Mashiyi, Nolusindiso Mofingxani, Bonisile Ntlola, Mzwanele Jokani, Jackson Ndamane, Xolane Mlisana and Xolani Madela, community leaders are fighting the process underway for nominating candidate for ward councillor in Lower Crossroads. PHOTOs: mbongi maseko

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A pepper spray, a knife, change of venue, squabbles over the rightful candidate are all the ingredients that make up the stew for the up-coming local government elections in Lower Crossroads, and things are not promising to get any better.

On one side is Mzwanele Jokani,40, a member of both the ANC and Sanco, who has opened a case of assault against a fellow member of the ANC.

Jokani alleges that said member pepper-sprayed and threaten to stab him after he and other members demanded to know why their names were removed from the list for candidacy as councillors in the up-coming elections.

“Instead she and her sister sprayed me and took out a knife, threatening to stab me.”

On the day of the interview, members of both Sanco and the ANC were seen filing into the hall for a meeting.

Jokani said they had also demanded to know why a branch general meeting was diverted to a hall in Ireland instead of a community hall in Lower Crossroads as residents had expected.

“The woman swore at and the pepper-sprayed me. I was busy on my phone when her sister came with a knife intending to stab me, but other members pushed her away.

“How can the regional office send someone so violent... I did not expect to be assaulted by my comrades, who should be the ones protecting me instead,” Jokani said.

Lieutenant Bheki Xulu, Philippi-East SAPS Corporate Communication office said “the case was registered, but there is no arrest at the stage investigation has been launched,”

Sandla Mashiyi, also a member of ANC and Sanco in Lower Crossroads, said Councillor Mzuzile Mpondwana of Ward 35 and other members of the ANC moved the meeting to another venue without informing anyone else.

“They changed the venue without telling us so that they would get a chance to vote for their own candidate without being opposed, but we managed to find-out, hence we stopped it(the meeting). They are pushing for their candidate who is not chosen by the entire community.

“Our candidate would (have)been left out should the BGM have continued. We want someone from the national office to be deployed to observe our BGM, and not someone from the region, because we no longer (have)trust them,” Mashiyi said.

He said the reason is that the factional group wanted to vote for Mpondwana to be re-elected for the position of councillor.

But the community has chosen Mboniswa Nelson Chitha whom they described as someone who has done a wonderful job in the area in the past.

“The entire community has vowed that no one is going to take part in the voting in this area if he (Chitha) is not the candidate for councillor,” he added.

Mpondwana in response, said the BGM was “disrupted” by some community members who are “not members of the ANC.”

He said the BGM was organised by the Branch Executive Committee (BEC), and not the ward councillor and that BEC is the one that decided the venue.

“The print out of the list was not done by the branch, but by the national office of the ANC and they are the ones who audited the list (of names).

Everything was explained to everyone several times. It might happen that some who did not appear on the list had lapsed membership.

“The ANC took a decision in Mangaung that for someone to qualify to be a candidate for councillor one must have been a member for ANC for at least six months as opposed to eight weeks.

They just chose not to understand it. They have a personal vendetta against me that is why they are saying all negative things about me,” he said. The ANC nedia office in the Western Cape was not available for comment at the time of going to print.

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