Tshwane City Council Chairman Dr Murunwa Makwarela claims he was physically attacked by ANC councilors during a council meeting on Tuesday 15 November. Photo by Kgalalelo Tlhoaele
- Tshwane Chairman Murunwa Makwarela said he was beaten by ANC councilors during a council meeting on Tuesday.
- Makwarela opened a criminal case at the Brooklyn police station on Thursday.
- The ANC denied that its councilors assaulted Makwarela, despite videos showing the altercation.
Tshwane Chairman Murunwa Makwarela said he was hounded like a dog, beaten and wounded in the head when ANC councilors assaulted him during a council session on Tuesday.
Makwarela detailed the scenes he was subjected to after opening a criminal case against ANC council members at the Brooklyn police station on Thursday.
Videos seen by News24 show a group of people attacking Makwarela as he sat in front of the council chambers.
Tuesday’s confrontation allegedly began when ANC councilors refused to allow the council to approve reports compiled by the municipal government.
One of the crucial reports that had to be adopted was to allow the City to secure access to loans of R1 billion to cushion its liquidity problems.
Makwarela told News24 that from the moment the matter was brought before councillors, ANC members raised objections and refused to let the meeting go ahead.
Fearing that the session would never get to the important business of the day, Makwarela decided to suspend the session and continue it online in a hybrid session.
[WATCH] Clearly this is not the behavior of councillors, this is the behavior of violent thugs. The city will file criminal charges against the ANC councilors for violent assault on the Council President. #CouncilTshwane pic.twitter.com/wgSh8wDxmu
— Mayor Randall Williams (@tshwane_mayor) November 16, 2022
After making the decision, Makwarela said he was attacked by ANC councillors.
“I was injured and chased like a dog into my office. They took my jacket off. They were trying to take me hostage, but I escaped. They chased me and managed to get me out of the building.”
“My vehicle was the one that protected me. Then they followed me to my office and banged on my doors. It was a group of 10 to 15 people,” Makwarela told News24.
“They told me they were going to shoot me.”
He opened a criminal case, which included assault and intimidation.
Video footage of the incident will be used as evidence.
Makwarela said the ANC did not understand the role of the Speaker, which is why they resorted to attacking him.
“The role of the Speaker is not partisan. It is officiating the meeting and maintaining law and order. So, there’s nothing that can make someone attack the Speaker. The Spokesperson does not produce the reports, but the executive does,” he said. .
Makwarela said the ANC was determined to crash the council, which is why they tried to crash the meeting and the adoption of the loan access report.
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“That loan would help solve short-term liquidity problems. Every city is going through an economic crisis. Absa had agreed to lend the City R1 billion in the short term, and that report was to adopt the terms of that loan.
“The intention was to collapse the council, so it did not approve that loan and ultimately put it under administration. This would put the city in the hands of the provincial government, the ANC,” Makwarela said.
The council session resumed at 8:30 p.m. Tuesday because Makwarela said the council chambers were not secure.
He said ANC councilors did not attend the meeting when the online session resumed.
Makwarela said ANC councilors were not happy with the hybrid session because “everything moves fast online and you can’t beat someone online, and that’s why they objected to the session resuming online.”
The ANC lost its majority in Tshwane following the 2016 municipal elections.
The party won an even smaller majority in the 2021 election.
Tshwane is governed by a multi-party government, made up of the DA, FF-Plus, Cope and ACDP.
The ANC in Tshwane denied that their councilors attacked Makwarela.
Regional party secretary George Matjila said Makwarela was biased in the way he officiated the meeting.