POLITICS

WATCH: EFF And ANC Councillors Clash In Ekurhuleni City council

"It was the when the [ANC] councillors charged at us."

18/03/2017 11:52 SAST | Updated 18/03/2017 13:06 SAST
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Economic Freedom Fighters supporters tear an ANC t-shirt outside Parliament during President Jacob Zumaï's State of the Nation Address.

The EFF in Ekurhuleni claimed the ANC is following the example set in Parliament after ANC councillors clashed with the EFF councillors in the Ekurhuleni council chambers on Thursday.

"The ANC and its coalition partners in Ekurhuleni have displayed arrogance and copycat style from [the] ANC in National Assembly by using scare tactics to intimidate the opposition especially the EFF," the party said in a statement on Saturday.

"[The ANC in Ekurhuleni] hired ANC youth league and branch members to dress in white shirts... to fill the galleries [and] pose as security."

Violence broke out after a failed bid by the DA to remove mayor Mzwandile Masina.

Clashes

In footage of the incident, ANC councillors push and pull EFF councillors dressed in red overalls. EFF councillors are also seen emptying water bottles on ANC councillors.

EFF Ekurhuleni chairperson Mampuru Mampuru told News24 that ANC approached the party's members after they started singing on the council floor.

"The Speaker was trying to push through a vote by [show of] hands, to keep the mayor in his position, without EFF and DA councillors voting," he said.

"It was the when the [ANC] councillors charged at us."

Mampuru claimed that there were only councillors in the chambers at that time.

Ekurhuleni ANC spokesperson Thabang Mashiyane said the confrontation followed an EFF member disrupting the voting procedure.

"Let us be quite clear that it [the confrontation] was not initiated by the ANC," Mashiyane said.

"The proceedings went on fine, the ANC members had already raised their hands and the official was busy counting the votes when one of the EFF members approached the official.

"The chief whip of council had to intervene because the EFF councillor was trying to take the books and pens from the people who were counting," he said.

In a statement on Saturday, the Ekurhuleni ANC caucus called the motion a "disgusting, weak attempt" by the DA, EFF and Cope to remove Masina.

The caucus said the mayor has achieved several successes in the metro and allegations of corruption made by the DA and EFF were baseless.

"The ANC caucus refuse to succumb to any attempts to discredit its government," it said.

"The executive mayor continues to ensure that we use resources to continue to provide sustainable free basic services with an annual cost of about R2 billion."

The DA in Ekurhuleni could not be immediately reached for comment.

News24