Ricochet News

Cllrs receive death threats for laying charges after being injured in 2016 Council brawl

By Afikile Lugunya - Jul 25, 2017
Cllrs receive death threats for laying charges after being injured in 2016 Council brawl

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor, Athol Trollip, on Tuesday revealed that he has written to Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle, and Police Minister, Fikile Mbalula, after two members of his Councillors received verified serious threats on their lives.

The threats have been targeting the Democratic Alliance (DA) Chief Whip, Werner Senekal, and Mayoral Committee member for Roads and Transport, Rano Kayser.

According to Trollip, the death threats could be linked to a case of attempted murder and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm in which ANC Councillors, Andile Lungisa and Gamilihleli Maqula, were implicated after a brawl that happened at a Council meeting in October 2016.

As a result of that brawl, Cllr Kayser had to be rushed to hospital bleeding from a huge gush on his head after apparently being hit by a glass water jug while Senekal was reportedly stabbed.

Kayser and Senekal later laid charges against Lungisa and Maqula - the case will be before the courts on the 31st of July. 

According to the Mayor, the death threats were sent to the Senekal and Kayser via SMS.

“The councillors that received these death threats are from the DA - Cllr Werner Senekal who was stabbed at a council meeting last year," Trollip told reporters.

“The other one is Councillor Rano Kayser, who is the mayoral committee member for roads and transport, and was hit with a water jug on the head and received many stitches on his head during the 27th of October Council meeting.

“When we were elected, our aim was for the NMB to be a safe city and these people have an important role to play in making this city a safer place. We want to be clear that we will not tolerate such threats in the Metro.” 

The Mayor said that by putting the word out to the public about the death threats, they want to show whoever is sending out these threats that they will not be intimidated into silence.

“By putting this to the public, maybe we can save lives and stop these death threats," he described.

According to the Mayor, the threats read: There are people hired to kill you just like that woman from Nkonkobe Municipality - in reference to the murder of the Speaker of the Raymond Mhlaba Local Council, Thozama Njobe, who was gunned down on Monday last week, for reportedly standing in the way of corruption.

“We believe in law and order and I fully regret that my colleagues have been put into such vulnerable position,” Trollip said. 

He said that Port Elizabeth police are still investigating the matter.