Johannesburg - The ANC in Gauteng has described the “anarchy caused by the EFF” in the Joburg CBD as similar to that of Nigeria’s Boko Haram.
Gauteng ANC spokesman Dumisa Ntuli made the remarks after Julius Malema and his Economic Freedom Fighters were accused of being responsible for damage to the Gauteng legislature building on Tuesday.
The EFF was also linked to damage to several businesses in the CBD, including vehicles belonging to private citizens, minutes after police removed them after a sit-in at the legislature.
EFF members were protesting against the decision of Speaker Ntombi Mekgwe to prevent eight MPLs from entering the chamber while dressed in their red overalls and domestic workers’ attire.
Chaos broke out when EFF members clashed with the police, who had to fire several stun grenades.
On Wednesday, Ntuli called on the police to use legislature cameras to prosecute them.
“The criminal actions of the EFF cannot be tolerated in a country where the peaceful right to protest is allowed. The anarchy of the EFF is similar to the conduct of Boko Haram in Nigeria.”
Ntuli said wreaking havoc in the legislature and in the streets would not help to deal with the attire matter.
“Every institution has a right to set standards and procedures to respect the decorum of their organisation.”
Ntuli accused EFF members of stealing cellphones of the legislature’s staff members and laptops belonging to other parties’ MPLs.
“It is more disgraceful that the stealing and looting was done in full view of their leader Julius Malema without any restraint,” he said.
The Gauteng SACP added its voice, with spokesman Lucian Segami saying the “working class must close ranks, law enforcement agencies must carry on with their work more diligently, and strong sanctions against the EFF representatives in the legislature must be considered”.
The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) justified police use of force.
Popcru general secretary Nkosinathi Theledi said “members of the South African Police Services were left with no choice but to use force in order to disperse the chaotic EFF protesters”.