Andile Lungisa’s appeal against assault sentence to be heard by SCA
Johannesburg - Controversial Nelson Mandela Bay ANC strongman Andile Lungusa is on Monday pinning his hopes on the Supreme Court of Appeal as it is expected to consider the appeal against his effective two-year sentence for assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
Lungisa, a former deputy president of the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) under the presidency of now EFF leader Julius Malema, was convicted in 2018 for smashing a glass water jug on a DA councillor Rano Kayser 's head during a scuffle in council in 2016.
He was later slapped with an effective sentence of two years imprisonment, which could bar him from occupying public office in the future if it remained the albatross around his neck.
The Eastern Cape High Court in Grahamstown dismissed Lungisa’s appeal against his conviction and sentence, resulting in him approaching the SCA.
The SCA would however only be appealing against the sentence as his bid to also appeal his conviction was not successful.
Lungisa remains an ordinary councillor and former MMC for infrastructure in the NMB coalition government formed by the ANC and other smaller parties.
The sentence could deal a huge blow to his political career should his appeal against it not succeed.
Viewed as a potential future mayoral candidate for the biggest metro in the province and a rising star within the party in the province, Lungisa could be legally barred from occupying any position, including as an ordinary councillor.
Section 47 of the Constitution prohibits individuals from members of the legislature if they have been convicted of an offence and sentenced to more than 12 months imprisonment without the option of a fine.
While this applied to Members of Parliament, and provincial legislatures, it also extended to municipalities as municipal council codes of conduct were crafted to carry similar measures.