The Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Department condemns the conduct of a mob that barricaded the entrance to the council sitting of the UThukela District, which was scheduled to sit on Friday.
The meeting was a result of the successful petition by the councillors within the council, who wrote to the MEC requesting her to convene a council sitting in terms of the powers given to her in Section 29(1A) of the Municipal Structures Act.
The actions of the mob, who were clad in IFP regalia, stopped the department from fulfilling its constitutional mandate, as officials were threatened, manhandled, and unlawfully prevented from accessing the venue in Ladysmith.
The department calls upon all political parties within the Uthukela District to distance themselves from the conduct of the mob, which has undermined the law of the country.
This conduct also sets a dangerous precedent in which mobs are used to undermine council processes.
The department is devoted to upholding the law and will not back down in the face of illegal activity by those who want to thwart council-led democratic processes.
The department also points out that some parties attempted to halt the proceedings, but the Pietermaritzburg High Court rejected these efforts, clearing the way for today’s sitting.