Western Cape MEC accused of electricity theft hits back at 'cabal of stinkfluencers'

Western Cape Human Settlements MEC Tertius Simmers.(File, Netwerk24)
Western Cape Human Settlements MEC Tertius Simmers.(File, Netwerk24)

Western Cape Human Settlements MEC Tertius Simmers has hit back against the GOOD party and ANC after allegations of impropriety were levelled at him.

In a statement, Simmers labelled the parties a "little cabal of stinkfluencers arrogating informed opinion as thin as their Western Cape support".

He was responding to "resurrected" claims by GOOD secretary general and MPL Brett Herron that he was guilty of electricity theft while serving as a DA councillor in George.

News24 previously reported Herron had questioned Premier Alan Winde in light of alleged whistleblowers' evidence that Simmers was guilty of the alleged theft.

Herron, a former DA member, said: "DA members have confirmed that prima facie evidence of theft by MEC Simmers was discovered and brought to the attention of the DA's provincial leadership.

"Although the allegation that Simmers stole electricity was reported to the George police, the investigation appears to have ground to a halt after the DA George council amended the meter tampering policy to prevent officials from reporting electricity theft to the SAPS for investigation."

Simmers, in what can best be described as an inventive political rebuttal with the headline "Obloquy. I will not stand it", said: "In politics a good story always trumps facts. To be (G)ood at concocting a (G)ood story is always (G)ood for political points. And better even to divert voter attention away from dismal failure.  

"The 'resurrection' of years-old allegations against me, killed long ago by the authorities woke to political expediency and immune to conspiracy and concocted complaints, is what a desperate and defeated GOOD and ANC vainly hope will ease the excruciating pain and downright embarrassment of recent election defeats when together they could only convince but one in three voters in the Western Cape of their 'solutions'.

"Did I say, 'GOOD and ANC'? Indeed. It's a little cabal of stinkfluencers arrogating informed opinion as thin as their Western Cape support," said Simmers. 

"Our country is burning while the Western Cape delivers consistently on the up, GOOD and the ANC rise only to snap at the ankles of those who improve lives, and of me, who, with the magnificent and able support of my team, delivers housing opportunities to disadvantaged people; making real the dreams of people on waiting lists; providing dignity to even backyard dwellers.

"I am moving forward at speed. My detractors are stalled in the past," he said.

Simmers and Herron most recently clashed in the Western Cape provincial legislature.

Simmers refused to be drawn into answering a question from him about whether the province bought land for housing at an allegedly inflated price of R64.6m because another parcel of land already owned by the City of Cape Town and earmarked for housing would turn Table View into "Khayelitsha by the sea", News24 previously reported.

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