Zille is ‘the devil herself’

DA leader Helen Zille. Photo: Independent Newspapers

DA leader Helen Zille. Photo: Independent Newspapers

Published Mar 7, 2011


Described as a “devil” by one speaker, Premier Helen Zille came under fire at a meeting called to discuss a community’s response to a shooting by City of Cape Town law enforcement officers.

The Struggle Veterans Association, not affiliated to the ANC, had called the meeting at the St Andrews High School in Elsies River on Sunday following the shooting last week, in which the ANC said 10 people were injured.

Karl Cloete, deputy secretary-general of the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa, told the meeting the shooting should be reported to the Human Rights Commission.

“You can’t make apologies for Zille, she is the devil herself,” said Cloete.

According to the City of Cape Town, the shooting came after about 400 people attacked law enforcement officers who were removing six shipping containers, converted into spaza shops, which city officials alleged had been erected illegally on council land.

Speaking at the meeting, community activist David William said the incident had left him and many others “deeply disappointed” in the city council.

“We’re trying as much as possible to help our people, but instead people were given eviction notices,” said William.

“Those containers were helping our people with their cheap prices.”

William alleged that a law enforcement official who led the operation came without a court order to show that the city had the right to remove the shipping containers from the land.

“When I pointed this out to him, he went ahead and ordered his men to shoot,” said Williams.

Ebrahim Mukadam, a local shopkeeper known for exposing the bread price-fixing cartels, said the city’s actions were a direct assault on poor people.

“There a tragedy happening in our country. It has become a sin to be poor. Who is waging a war on the poor? Whose aims are being served?” Mukadam asked his audience of about 100 people.

He said “the war on the poor” was a deliberate campaign to serve the aims of “big business” that operated in township areas.

Dickie Meter, an ANC activist in Hout Bay, also blamed the premier for the shooting last week - and that in Hangberg last year in which several people lost eyes.

As Meter spoke to the group in the school hall, he was heckled by DA supporters, in party colours, who had been allowed into the hall.

Ward 24 councillor Asa Abrahams said Zille was not there to defend herself.

But this did not deter Cloete, who said he blamed the DA for the shooting.

“The DA is responsible for shooting our people, whose only crime was seeking a decent living, and must be reported to the Human Rights Commission,” Cloete said.

Soon afterwards, the DA supporters in the hall, led by Abrahams, walked out of the meeting.

ANC provincial chairman Marius Fransman described the shooting as “a serious onslaught” on poor people, an attack on African and coloured people.

Meanwhile, former ANC provincial chairman Allan Boesak said he had refused an invitation to the meeting as he had been told he would be sharing a platform with Fransman.

Boesak had been billed to attend, but he said on Sunday he wanted no part in party politics. - Cape Times

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