Andile Lungisa claims Hawks interrogated him for coup attempt, but could not link him to it
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Durban – Former Nelson Mandela Bay councillor and former ANC Youth League deputy president Andile Lungisa claims he has fallen victim to an alleged fishing expedition by the Hawks and the police, who wrongly accused him of taking part in the recent “failed coup attempt”.
Lungisa, in a statement issued on Tuesday, claimed that he was interrogated but nothing could be found to link him to accusations, including that he procured arms. He said instead he was charged for contravention of Covid-19 regulations and told to appear in court on Friday.
His claims come as the state continues to round up people it suspects of orchestrating last week's torching and looting to stage the unrest against the government of President Cyril Ramaphosa.
"Yesterday, I was summoned and interrogated by police intelligence and the Hawks from the ‘national office’ for my role in the supposed ‘coup’/ ‘insurrection’ attempt,’’ Lungisa claimed, but did not say which police station was used as the interrogation venue.
Andile Lungisa letter just shows that we have a Government that is lost and doesn’t know what’s happening pic.twitter.com/n4kV1icS4r— Mbongiseni Mbatha (@Mbatha10) July 20, 2021
Moreover, he claimed that he was accused of procuring and keeping arms to be used for the failed coup.
"In the interrogation by the organs of the state, I was accused of having assembled an arsenal for the purpose of overthrowing the state. This is of course an outright lie. Not only is this allegation baseless, I have never handled a weapon in my life.
“The next charge was that I broke Covid-19 regulations that are routinely broken by millions of people in the country and the offending parties are usually penalised with a fine if the police pursue them. The last charge was that I opposed president Jacob Zuma’s arrest.
"On the last charge I am in good company with the minority judgment of the Constitutional Court. I offered the interrogating officers my phone to download whatever information could assist them in their investigation. They declined.
"I done so with a clean conscience of knowing that I was not party to any coup attempt (sic). I was supportive of the protests against the unjust arrest of president Zuma but I never advocated for any violence," he further alleged.
Mathapelo Peters and Brenda Muridzili, spokesperson of the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (NatJOINTS) currently handing security matters, had not responded when asked about Lungisa's claim. Their comment will be added as soon as it is received.