Durban - Police allegedly rescued members of the ANC’s KwaZulu-Natal executive committee when chairs were thrown at them by some party members who were angry at the recall of Zandile Gumede as mayor of eThekwini Municipality.
The incident happened during a meeting of the some PEC members and branch delegates at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Friday evening.
However, ANC provincial spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu denied that he, party provincial treasurer Nomusa Dube-Ncube and two other PEC members
were protected by police from angry members.
Spokesperson of Gumede’s backers Mzomuhle Dube said branches were demanding an explanation to Gumede’s dismissal and disbandment of the
eThekwini regional executive committee, which had been replaced by the regional task team.
“Police came in to rescue them and they left,” said Dube. When asked about the throwing of chairs, Dube said “when people are angry anything can happen”.
“I don’t want to own or reject the incident, but when there is quarrel anything happens,” said Dube who was at the meeting.
“So far no one has been injured,” he said.
Dube said Friday's meeting was a follow up of another one which was held two months ago but ended in a deadlock as branches were not accepting an explanation about Gumede’s leave of absence, which was due to her fraud and corruption charges in connection with the city’s solid waste tender.
The PEC had said Gumede was fired for poor performance. “They left (after the previous meeting) us with a promise that they would revisit the issue of the RTT (regional task team) and mayor’s leave of absence, but now we hear that the mayor has been fired.
“Therefore as branches we cannot continue with the meeting when we are being fooled. Right now we are deadlocked and we want to discuss these matters with the national executive committee,” he said.
Mthembu said: “Your sources are wrong as we did not discuss the mama (Gumede) matter. No police officer came to rescue us. I just walked out,” he said.
He said the meeting was meant to give branches a report about the decision on the RTT and the assessment of the municipalities.
“The meeting was not about the former mayor. It was the ANC meeting to tell the branches about the decision that has been taken by the province.
“Unfortunately we had to agree to call off the meeting as it was not going accordingly. There were lots of disagreements as we started at 3pm and continued
until 7pm without any progress,” said Mthembu.
He said the date of the next meeting would be announced at a later stage.