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Pretoria - The City of Tshwane's claims that the EFF failed to secure the requisite permission to hold a rally at an Atteridgeville stadium was “simply childish”, the party said on Wednesday.
“The (Tshwane) media statement reflects a desperate act that comes out of the humiliation suffered in court yesterday when the city could not prove why it withdrew permission on the eve of the event,” spokesman Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said in a statement.
This was after the city issued two press statements on Wednesday relating to the Economic Freedom Fighter's planned rally at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on Sunday.
In the first statement, the city said the EFF failed to attend an events joint operations committee (JOC) earlier in the day, which would render that the party's planned rally was “non-compliant and illegal”.
The city later back-tracked, saying the meeting would be rescheduled for Friday at 10am.
Ndlozi said that the EFF attended an events JOC meeting on Tuesday, and it was decided that one outstanding document necessary for the event would be handed over on Sunday morning. On Wednesday, the EFF confirmed this again with the relevant authorities.
“It is therefore evident that either someone within the City of Tshwane government seeks to embarrass the metro or sabotage the publicity and success of the EFF event,” Ndlozi said.
“The claims... are false and must be treated as such. Least of all, there was never a JOC meeting this morning.”
He said the rally would continue as planned, having met all the legal requirements.
On Tuesday, the EFF approached the High Court in Pretoria to challenge the city's decision to withdraw permission for the use of the Lucas Moripe Stadium.
The municipality initially granted the EFF permission to use the stadium but then withdrew it.
The party said in court papers it had already spent R5 million on the rally when the agreement was unilaterally cancelled.
Judge Sulet Potterill removed the EFF's application by agreement between the parties, saying it appeared that the dispute between them had gone away.