If any court bars us from the elections, 'we will start an armed struggle' - BLF after FF+ withdraws case

2019-04-04 15:43
BLF leader Andile Mngxitama addresses media outside court. (Sesona Ngqakamba/News24)

BLF leader Andile Mngxitama addresses media outside court. (Sesona Ngqakamba/News24)

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The FF Plus has withdrawn its bid in the Electoral Court sitting in the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg to have Black First Land First (BLF) barred from participating in the 2019 elections.

"We withdrew our case on Friday because we said there is a jurisdictional technical argument that the Electoral Commission is making in their opposing affidavits that can go 50-50, and we feel it is very important that we do not lose this case on a technical argument," FF Plus MP Wouter Wessels told News24.

Wessels said the substance of the party's case was strong and no opposing parties would oppose its merits.

He said that was the only reason the party decided to withdraw its case, "for now".

READ: FF Plus and BLF to battle it out in the Electoral Court

Appeal application

Wessels said the party on Monday brought an appeal application to the electoral commission, and has given it seven days to decide on the matter.

"We are appealing the decision of the Chief Electoral Officer to register the BLF as a political party, as we say the Electoral Commission Act prohibits the Chief Electoral Officer from registering a party that excludes on the basis of race, colour or ethnicity and the BLF conceded in their opposing affidavits that they do exclude white people from membership," said Wessels.

The party said if the commission did not consider the appeal, it would reopen the case with the Electoral Court for the BLF to be deregistered.

'They have chickened out'

Speaking outside court after being told that the FF Plus had withdrawn its case, BLF leader Andile Mngxitama said the party had wasted its campaign time by working on the case, only for it to withdraw. 

He termed the FF Plus as "shivering".

"We arrived here ready to fight. We were ready to defeat them and they have run away. The Freedom Front Plus have ran away, they have chickened out," Mngxitama said.

ALSO READ: FF Plus goes to court to have 'blacks-only' BLF deregistered for elections

He said the party was clear that it would defeat any case against it brought by the FF Plus, saying nothing would stop BLF from going to Parliament.

Mngxitama maintained BLF would never accept white people as members.

"Let us reiterate, we are a blacks-only organisation [and] we represent the interests of black people to defeat white people so that we can get real liberation as black people," he said.

Mngxitama made the threat that if any court stopped the party from being a blacks-only organisation, it would go underground and start an armed struggle.

"Any court, anybody stopping us from going into the elections, we will start an armed struggle," he said.

He added that the party had the support of Zimbabwean veterans and MK.

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Read more on:    blf  |  ff plus  |  iec  |  johannesburg  |  elections 2019  |  politics  |  courts
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