SANDU contemplates charging deputy defence minister
Graeme Hosken | 2017-04-06 13:34:51.0
Deputy Defence Minister Kebby Maphatsoe. File photo.
Image by: LUCKY MAIBI/GALLO IMAGES
The SA National Defence Union is contemplating criminally charging Deputy Defence Minister Kebby Maphatsoe.
The union‚ which will announce its decision on Friday after a meeting of its national executive committee‚ is concerned about Maphatsoe and his involvement in the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association’s intention to defend the ANC’s Luthuli House in Johannesburg.
Hundreds of MK Vets are set to descend on Johannesburg on Friday in response to thousands of protesters who will gather in the city to call for the ousting of President Jacob Zuma.
Maphatsoe is the MK Vets’ national chairman.
Anti-Zuma protesters originally planned to march on Luthuli House until police informed them their safety could not be guaranteed. The march is now scheduled to end in Mary Fitzgerald Square.
Countrywide protests are set for Friday as pressure continues to mount on Zuma over his axing of former finance minister‚ Pravin Gordhan‚ and his deputy‚ Mcebisi Jonas.
The two‚ who were fired last week‚ have been replaced by Malusi Gigaba‚ who is the new minister and Sifiso Buthulezi as his deputy.
MK’s KwaZulu-Natal branch has said that they will send at least 600 “battle ready” members to Luthuli House to defend and protect Zuma.
Maphatsoe has said that they will defend Zuma and Luthuli House against anyone who marches on the ANC’s headquarters tomorrow. He has‚ however‚ said that they will not be armed and that there will be no violence from their members.
SANDU general secretary‚ Pikkie Greeff‚ confirmed that a debate on whether to criminal charge Maphatsoe or not would be held when the union’s NEC met.
“As far as we are concerned if MK vets assemble outside Luthuli House they will be subjected to the Gatherings Act‚ and if any of them are armed‚ they will be in violation of this act.
“In terms of intimidation and threats of violence this also means that those ‘defending’ Luthuli House will also be in violation of the act.”
He said the gathering of the defenders would also see them in violation of the act regulating private security and security guards.
“Every security guard has to be registered. If these ‘defenders’ act as security guards and are not registered that is another law that they will be breaking.”
Greeff said that if Maphatsoe was involved in the defence of Luthuli House illegally he would also be in violation of the acts.
– TMG Digital/The Times