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Mangaung council speaker suspended

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Staff Reporter

Mangaung council speaker Stefan Lockman has been suspended with immediate effect.

Lockman, an ANC member, was suspended by her party after she allegedly defied the party’s caucus in council and allowed a vote of no confidence against city manager Sello More on Wednesday evening.

More was kicked out of office with just three days left on his contract and has since approached the courts on an urgent basis for an interdict.

The suspension was announced by the ANC Interim Regional Committee (IRC) in Mangaung on Thursday following an urgent meeting earlier in the day.

“The speaker is suspended with immediate effect,” said IRC coordinator Sabelo Pitso during the briefing.

He said an acting speaker will be nominated soon.

Pitso said the IRC had noted with concern the illegal actions of the speaker and the councillors who participated in the sitting.

“As a consequence, all ANC councillors were counselled to refrain from participating in any motion regarding this matter until it has been decided upon by the courts,” he said.

“A further directive was made by the chief whip on 26 January 2022 that ANC councillors should not participate in motions that are still being processed by the courts.”

Pitso said the IRC was very disappointed with the speaker’s move to command a small group of councillors to vote with the opposition against a directive of the ANC caucus.

“Deployees of the ANC are always reminded that they serve at the behest of the organisation with the chief whip being the central coordination point of all the activities of ANC in the municipality,” he said.

“All political and operational decisions of ANC deployees are directed and coordinated from this point.”

Pitso said all councillors will now be called before the ANC Regional Working Committee and those who participated in the vote will be asked to explain their actions.

He said the party’s disciplinary committee will institute disciplinary proceedings and the party also wants councillor Patrick Monyakoane to be withdrawn from the Independent Electoral Commission list.

“It is the considered view of the IRC that the actions of the speaker and the few councillors who attended the council sitting constitute gross insubordination and decidedly put the ANC in Mangaung into disrepute,” said Pitso.

“Their actions are intended to destabilise the normal functioning of the council and undermine growing public confidence in the capacity of the municipality to deliver services.

“The IRC has a reasonable apprehension that the speaker and these few comrades will likely continue with their actions unless the ANC takes decisive action.”

He said the ANC is committed to a process of unity and renewal which includes working hard to ensure good governance is restored in municipalities.

“Any ANC deployee who stands opposed to the unity of the ANC shall be throttled. The flagrant and sheer determination to defy party decisions shall not obtain in the Mangaung region,” the IRC coordinator warned.

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Two Free State women allegedly killed by ‘druggie’ sons

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SHOCKING MURDER . . . A 65-year-old woman was allegedly stabbed with a sharp object by her 28-year-old son after she failed to give him money to buy drugs

Two women from Mangaung have allegedly been attacked and killed in two separate incidents by their own sons believed to be using drugs.

In the latest incident which happened in Kagisanong along Masike Street at the weekend, a 65-year-old woman was allegedly stabbed with a sharp object by her 28-year-old son after she failed to give him money to buy drugs.

Police spokesperson for Mangaung Metro Lieutenant Colonel Thabo Covane said in the woman died on the scene from the stab wounds.

“The victim had visible multiple stab wounds on the head and body,” he said, adding the matter was reported by the brother to the deceased, who was also attacked by the suspect who is now in police custody.

Covane said the complainant informed the police that the suspect is believed to be using drugs and had asked his now deceased mother for money to buy drugs but she told him that she didn’t have money.

“The suspect got angry, went out of the house, came back with a piece of iron and stabbed the deceased with it several times,” he explained.

“When he was done, he turned to the complainant and also stabbed him on the chest.”

Covane said the uncle survived the attack but the daring suspect locked them inside the house and had to wait until Friday morning to get help.

The suspect was later traced and arrested by the police.
He is expected to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court this Monday facing charges of murder and attempted murder.

In a similar case, a 42-year-old man will be applying for bail at the Botshabelo Magistrates Court on the same day after allegedly strangling to death his 71-year-old mother last Sunday, August 7, 2022 in the E-Section, Botshabelo.

The suspect is also said to history of substance abuse.

Free State acting provincial police commissioner, Major General Modise, condemned the killing of the two elderly women. – Staff Reporter

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Magashule loses ConCourt bid to reverse ANC suspension

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APPLICATION DISMISSED . . . The Constitutional Court says Ace Magashule has no prospects of successfully appealing his suspension as ANC secretary-general

Former Free State premier Ace Magashule has lost his latest court bid to have his suspension as ANC secretary-general lifted.

He had approached the Constitutional Court seeking to have his temporary ousting from Luthuli House reversed.

In a judgment handed down on Wednesday, the apex court said Magashule had no prospects of successfully appealing his suspension.

“The Constitutional Court has considered the application for condonation and the application for leave to appeal. It has concluded that, although there are no reasonable prospects of success on the merits of the application for leave to appeal, the delay in bringing the application for leave to appeal is minimal,” the court said.

Magashule first approached the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg to challenge his suspension, but the matter was dismissed with costs.

He subsequently approached the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA), which dismissed the application in January 2022, prompting him to take up his case with the Constitutional Court.

Magashule was suspended from the ANC in May 2021 because of the party’s step-aside rule.

The rule requires ANC members facing criminal charges to step aside while their court cases are under way.

Magashule is facing corruption charges linked to the Free State asbestos corruption scandal. – Staff Reporter

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Municipal manager facing tender fraud charges granted bail

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THE ACCUSED . . . Maluti-a-Phofung municipal manager Futhuli Patrick Mothamaha is out on bail

Maluti-a-Phofung municipal manager Futhuli Patrick Mothamaha, 49, was on Friday released on a bail of R500 000 by the Phuthaditjhaba Magistrates Court after he was arrested by The Hawks for fraud, corruption and Contravention of the Municipal Finance Management Act.

The state alleges that he allegedly awarded a contract of R58 million to Kill Crime Security Company in 2020 without following proper procurement processes.

National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Phaladi Shuping said Mothamaha allegedly signed a service level agreement on May 19, 2020, appointing the company to render security services to the municipality for a period of three months without following procurement processes.

“The municipality continued to pay Kill Crime Security Company for almost two years without a contract,” said Shuping.

He said Mothamaha was supposed to appear with his co-accused, father and daughter who are the owners of Kill Crime Security, Thabiso, 55, and Dimakatso Sekhosana, 29, on Monday after they were instructed by The Hawks to hand themselves over on Sunday, but he failed to do so.

The Sekhosanas appeared on Monday facing similar charges and were released on bail of R150 000 each.

Part of Mothamaha’s bail conditions are that he must not enter the offices of the municipality, not interfere with the investigations nor intimidate witnesses.

The case was postponed to September 30 for further investigations. – Staff Reporter

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