Police in standoff with ANC at Tshwane council meeting

2017-04-06 18:44
Tshwane council meeting. (News24, file)

Tshwane council meeting. (News24, file)

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Tshwane address disrupted by Solomon Mahlangu protest

2017-04-06 15:14

ANC councillors in Tshwane disrupted the annual State of the Capital Address with calls for Solomon Mahlangu to be respected.WATCH

Pretoria - There was high drama at the State of the Capital address on Thursday when a fight broke out between metro policemen and an African National Congress councillor.

Police came in twice asking ANC to leave the hall. The heated spate continued with other councillor joining in the fight.

Some ANC councillors were seen swinging red belts at metro police dressed in civilian clothes. It was quickly stopped and the leader of ANC rang newly appointed minister of police Fikile Mbalula to remove police.

The disruptions delayed Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga from delivering his state of the capital address for four hours.

Police left the hall and the budget speech was moved to a dining area across the road.

Msimanga though, vowed to continue with the address despite multiple disruptions by the ANC.

Solomon Mahlangu postponement

The chaos began when ANC members demanded that the City of Tshwane speaker Katlego Mathebe postpone the sitting in honour of Solomon Mahlangu.

Wednesday marked the 38th anniversary of Mahlangu execution.

"True to form, the African National Congress today disrupted the Executive Mayor of Tshwane's maiden State of the Capital Address at the Tshwane Events Centre. In doing so, they have completely undermined the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, the will of the people and the Rule of Law.

"This is symptomatic of an ANC in complete chaos as they continue to reach new lows," Msimanga's spokesperson Samkelo Mgobozi said.

Mgobozi said conduct of the ANC will be dealt with appropriately to the rules of council.

"The City duly elected to proceed with the SoCA to demonstrate to the people of Tshwane where we have come from and announce to our people how we are going to deliver better services and provide opportunities so that they may live a better life as envisioned by Solomon Mahlangu and many other struggle heroes."

Meanwhile ANC councillors said they had made a call to Mbalula to report the matter.

Leader of the opposition in the ANC Mapiti Matsena told ANC members that Mbalula had spoken to a police colonel demanding that someone take responsibility for any violence that may occur.

He encouraged ANC members to fight back if provoked by the police.

Msimanga will pay tribute to Mahlangu and set out his plans to give effect to his legacy to the people for whom he sacrificed his life as has always been the case when this decision was taken in September last year where the ANC in Council failed to register any dissenting vote, Mgobozi said.

"We will not be deterred by this," Mgobozi said.

The State of the Capital address continued at a different venue four hours after it was scheduled to commence.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  pretoria  |  politics

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