ANC flag. Picture: Phill Magakoe/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Durban - Three ANC councillors in Vryheid, northern KwaZulu-Natal, have been arrested, allegedly, for bribing a DA councillor ahead of a motion of no confidence to the speaker of the Abaqulusi Municipality.

Hawks KZN spokesperson Captain Simphiwe Mhlongo confirmed the arrests of the three councillors and said they would appear in the Vryheid Magistrate’s Court on corruption charges on Friday. The arrests are believed to have made just after midday. 

DA KZN leader Zwakele Mncwango said the party informed the Hawks of the attempt to bribe a DA councillor ahead of a motion of no confidence vote against the speaker. The municipality in question is co-governed by the IFP and the DA.

He said the ANC councillors had allegedly offered the DA councillor upto R100 000 and future job prospects. Mncwango said a R20 000 deposit was paid to the DA councillor at a local Wimpy in Vryheid, before the Hawks swooped in.

“They wanted to remove the speaker to get to be in control and ultimately remove the mayor. They were trying to collapse council,” said Mncwango.

Mncwango alleged the ANC had been on a concerted effort to collapse councils which were not governed by the ANC in the province, citing the Zululand and Endumeni municipalities. 

Mncwango added “this is the only we can deal with corruption” and said they did not want to go around making allegations and decided to work with the Hawks on the matter.

“We are happy, this is an example to say we can work together to fight corruption. If the speaker was wrong, why would you pay someone to do their job. We also want the Hawks to investigate where does the money come from,” he said.

ANC KZN spokesperson Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu said they learnt of the arrest of the councillors through the media.

“We did get the information about an hour ago. We are still trying to get information, but we are not able to ascertain the correctness of the matter at this point,” she said.

*** This is a developing story.