File photo: Sizwe Ndingane
Kimberley - A physical altercation between ANC members at a branch meeting in Warrenton has resulted in criminal charges and calls for the Northern Cape Provincial Legislature’s ethics committee to take swift and decisive action.

On Friday, ANC MPL Thapelo Dithebe made a brief court appearance following an incident that took place at a recent branch meeting in the Magareng municipal district.

The DA in the Province has reported the matter to the Northern Cape Legislature’s ethics committee, after news of Dithebe’s alleged involvement in a brawl with a young man in Warrenton came to light.

“The DA views Dithebe’s behaviour as completely unacceptable,” DA provincial chairperson, Harold McGluwa, said yesterday.

“Dithebe’s conduct is not in line with the values and principles of the legislature’s Code of Ethics and Conduct.

“His alleged involvement in a criminal offence has brought the image of the legislature into serious disrepute.”

McGluwa emphasised that members of the legislature must, at all times, promote and support ethical behaviour and set an example for their constituencies.

“We cannot condone a situation whereby an MPL, who was voted into power by the people of this Province, fails to resolve conflict in the public interest.

“Dithebe has failed this mandate and must be held to account to the legislature for his bad behaviour.”

The case was postponed to the middle of September for further investigation.

ANC provincial secretary, Deshi Ngxanga, said that the party was aware of the incident, adding that the ANC would wait for the investigation to conclude before determining the way forward.

“The ANC in the Northern Cape has received a report on the incident that took place in Magareng from the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) member deployed to the branch general meeting (BGM) as well as a complaint from the member that was allegedly beaten,” said Ngxanga.

“The report from the PEC member, who was deployed to the BGM, needs to be processed. This process will reach finality soon and the decision will be communicated.

“For now, we are unable to give details on whether or not action will or will not be taken as it will be a bit premature.”

Meanwhile, police in the Province confirmed the incident.

“Warrenton police are investing a case of common assault after the alleged fighting incident which occurred earlier this month,” said police spokesperson, Captain Sergio Kock.

“The suspect appeared in the Warrenton Magistrate’s Court on Friday and the case was remanded to September 14.”

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