Councillor accused of assault

2010-12-20 00:00

RUCTIONS in nomination processes for councillors for next year’s local government elections have escalated after a community member from KwaPata near Edendale was assaulted and his car was damaged, allegedly by Ward 10 councillor Musawenkosi Mchunu, this weekend.

Said Sthembiso Mlaba: “I was assaulted by the ward councillor and his friends when I went to inquire about my car that was scratched by his nephew. They beat me up and damaged my car because I am related to Nana Mlaba, who is seen as a threat to Mchunu’s plan to retain his position as a councillor.”

He said the incident took place on Friday and that he was taken to Northdale Hospital for a medical examination because he was badly hurt.

“My uncle basically voiced publicly that he does not support Mchunu as a candidate because that is what the community want. We have no problem with Mchunu; I do not know why they beat me up because I am not even involved in politics,” said Mlaba.

After going to the hospital, he opened a case of assault and malicious damage to property at the Plesislaer police station, he said.

“I have lost faith in the police because they are protecting this man. I reported this incident on Saturday, but Mchunu has not been arrested simply because he is councillor. If I was the one who had committed this crime I would be in the holding cells right now,” said Mlaba.

His uncle, Nana Mlaba, said animosity between him and the councillor arose because he is backing Msizi Ngcobo to be a candidate.

He said he no problem with Mchunu as a comrade, but the community wants new leadership.

“The situation is so bad that my family has been intimidated. I have obtained a peace order against Mchunu because I do not know what will happen to me in the run-up to elections,” said Nana Mlaba.

He said that if he could he would have bodyguards to protect him.

Mchunu denied the allegations, saying they are an attempt at tarnishing his image. In 2006 his opponents alleged that he is a criminal because they did not want him stand as a ward councillor, he said.

Mchunu said he is the one who is being intimidated.

Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Joey Jeevan confirmed a case of assault and malicious damage to property has been opened. No arrests have been made.

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