Johannesburg – The ANC on Friday condemned its Nelson Mandela Bay councilors, following a brawl between them and DA councilors at a council meeting.
“We condemn the incident that took place in the strongest terms possible. One of the strongest principles of the ANC is non-violence,” ANC national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said.
“No amount of blame game will help people understand what happened.”
The ANC’s regional members however threatened to “rise up” and defend themselves.
The ANC was reacting to violence at a council meeting in Port Elizabeth on Thursday. The fight in the Woolboard Exchange Building was finally brought to an end when a security guard allegedly fired a shot into the ceiling.
DA councillor and mayoral council member Rano Kayser and ANC councillor Rosie Daemons were both taken to hospital. Kayser sustained a serious head injury, while Daemons apparently fainted.
The fracas broke out during a discussion about the disruption of Integrated Development Plan meetings being conducted across the metro.
Mandela Bay Mayor Athol Trollip on Thursday described the violence as the lowest point in the history of the council.
He said ANC councillors Andile Lungisa and Makhi Feni had approached the speaker’s table, and one of them had struck Kayser over the head with a heavy, glass jug.
Lungisa told News24 on Friday that the DA was violent and arrogant.
“I think we are going to lose our patience on the issue of the DA. We cannot be beaten by the DA, like kids. If it needs be, we will defend ourselves. Time will come where we rise up and defend ourselves.”
Kodwa said the public was looking to council for service delivery.
“That incident must never happen again,” he said.
Lungisa blamed the DA for the brawl and claimed the party was violating rules and procedures. He said ANC councillors who were allegedly assaulted during the brawl had filed charges against their DA counterparts.
The ANC lost the metro to the DA following the August 3 local government elections.