Denial of right to march 'insulting'Comment on this story
Cape Town - The Ses’khona People’s Movement expects “action” from its members in response to the City of Cape Town denying it the right to march on the CBD on Thursday.
The march has been organised by the same people whose march in October last year led to city centre chaos.
It is unclear what “action” had been contemplated for Thursday, although the group’s spokesman, Sithembele Majova, said on Wednesday that there were no plans for a formal march.
“But, there’s no telling what may happen. Our members are very disappointed in the city and feel the denial of our right to march is insulting.”
In its application, the group said the aim was to compel the government to make land, housing and sanitation available for residents of informal settlements in Cape Town.
JP Smith, mayoral committee member for safety and security, said permission for marches was considered via an objective and independent process.
“There is no political interference. We have nothing to do with denying a right to march, so I cannot comment on that aspect.”
Referring to the march last October led by former ANC councillors and Ses’khona leaders Andile Lili and Loyiso Nkohla, Smith, said: “If the march goes ahead, illegally and with violence, then the law must take its course.
“We are currently pursuing a civil matter against march leaders for damages incurred last October. We will be monitoring and recording any illegal protests. If these individuals are involved in vandalism, they can expect to be sued for more damages.”
The City of Cape Town has warned “credible evidence” from police indicated that today’s action could result in disruptions to traffic, injuries to people and damage to property.
Permission for the march was denied because “police, city traffic services and metro police would be unable to contain the threat posed by (this march)”, said city media manager Priya Reddy.
The threat to march on Thursday came after the ANC disciplined Nkohla and Lili for leading marches without the party’s consent.
The pair are also prohibited from taking part in an illegal march as part of bail conditions pertaining to a pending case against them.
Meanwhile, Nkohla and Lili said on Tuesday that they would challenge the ANC’s decision to expel and suspend them,respectively.
They were found guilty of bringing the party into disrepute for protests, which included the dumping of faeces at the airport and provincial legislature, last year.