ANC's Tony Yengeni under fire over tweet about tyres 'waiting for Mashaba'

2019-04-07 23:02
Tony Yengeni.

Tony Yengeni.

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The DA will be reporting convicted fraudster and ANC NEC member Tony Yengeni to the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) following what it called provocative statements made on Twitter.

On Friday, Yengeni tweeted a picture with three tyres in the foreground, seemingly for Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba.

While Yengeni's tweet is unclear what the tyres are meant for, tyres have previously been used to necklace people - a practise of execution and torture where a rubber tyre, filled with petrol is put around a victim and set alight.

The tweet was in connection with the protests in Alexandra township, which took place during the week.

Tweet incites violence

The DA's premier candidate in Gauteng, Solly Msimanga condemned in the strongest terms the comment made by Yengeni.

"This commentary clearly indicates that Yengeni is encouraging the residents of Alex to resort to violence and lawlessness against Mayor Herman Mashaba," Msimanga said.

"It is disappointing that an ANC leader who understands the IEC rules continues to go against the rules by fuelling violence in Alex using the plight of the residents which has caused by the failures of his own political party."

"This indeed proves that the protest in Alex is not a service delivery protest but more of a political ploy few weeks before the elections."

Earlier on Sunday, Msimanga laid charges against the ANC for incitement of violence, accusing the ruling party of orchestrating the protests in Alex as an election ploy.

"Yengeni has crossed the line, it is evident that ANC is behind this violent protest in Alex. His statement is inciting violence and he and his party, the ANC will be held accountable for any injuries and damages caused during this protest," Mismanga said.

ANC rebuttal

In a statement, ANC spokesperson Dakota Legoete labelled Msimanga's comments as desperate and the laying of charges as a political gimmick.

"Instead of accounting to the people of Alexandra for the massive failures of Herman Mashaba and the DA, Solly Msimang (sic) chooses to bark at the wrong tree. The whole thing would be laughable were it not so serious," Legoete said.

"While the ANC  does not wish to dignify Solly Msimang's (sic) political gimmicks with a response, laying a criminal charge against the ANC is an attempt to deflect attention from the DA's service delivery failures in Alexandra and Herman Mashaba's blatant refusal to  account. This will not succeed."

While Legoete did not comment on Yengeni's Tweet, he did call on Mashaba to stop running away and hiding from the people of Alexandra.

"He must listen to the people and respond to their concerns. That is all the people of Alexandra are asking for."

"The ANC is not apologetic for standing on the side of the people of Alexandra. They deserve good governance and service delivery".

Alex protests

Last week residents of Alexandra, citing service delivery issues, took to the streets of the township. They called on Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba to address them.

News24 reported on Wednesday, that angry residents blocked roads leading into the area with rubble, burning tyres and rocks as they led the #AlexShutDown demonstrations.

Mashaba sent member of his mayoral committee, Michael Sun to address the irate residents on Wednesday. The community, however,  ridiculed and booed him, drowning out his speech with songs. Some hurled racist insults at Sun. Eventually, he was forced to leave the volatile area.

On Thursday, a small group of residents started protesting again before suspending their action until Friday, calling on Mashaba to address them at a mass meeting expected to take place the next day in the township.

Mashaba also released a statement on Thursday, challenging President Cyril Ramaphosa to accompany him to the area.

Mashaba blamed the previous administration, led by the ANC, of causing the service delivery problems in the township.

The Johannesburg mayor has indicated that he will visit the area on April 15. 

During Friday's mass meeting, speaker after speaker vowed that barricading and burning tyres in the streets of Alexandra had yielded no results. 

They have indicated that the protest will continue in neighbouring Sandton on Monday. 

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Read more on:    anc  |  iec  |  tony yengeni  |  elections 2019

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