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Three DA councillors suspended


Meanwhile, a complaint has been lodged to probe alleged tampering with former provincial DA leader Andrew Louw’s electricity metre.

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THREE DA councillors – Herbert Japhta, Phillip Vorster and Elize Niemann – have been suspended after complaints were referred to the party’s federal legal council regarding the selection of shortlisted candidates to stand as councillors at Sol Plaatje Municipality.

The five-year term of councillors will come to an end when the local government elections are held.

The complaints relate to the alleged deliberate manipulation of the scoring of candidates.

Meanwhile, a complaint was lodged for investigation after the electricity box at the residence of DA Member of the Provincial Legislature and former provincial party leader Andrew Louw was allegedly tampered with.

An affidavit signed by the team leader of street lights at Sol Plaatje Municipality, who conducted an inspection at Louw’s home in May, indicated that the electricity metre had been tampered with in 2019.

He stated that the metre box was “hidden” inside the kitchen, where it was suspected that the power usage was bypassed.

The municipal official said that Louw was aware of the problem.

“I checked the metre bypass register and no permission was granted to allow the metre bypass. According to my knowledge, the electricity metre was illegally tampered with.”

Furthermore, the DA federal legal council has yet to arrive at an outcome following the bus incident saga involving DA councillors Mariam Louw, Eleanor Badenhorst and Elize Niemann.

The incident took place in August 2019 while they were travelling to the University of Fort Hare in East London to attend a course.

Charges of crimen injuria and assault were opened against Mariam Louw, while she in turn claimed that she was threatened with a knife.

Mariam Louw stated that the article published in 2019 regarding the Fort Hare saga was “false, inaccurate and unsubstantiated”.

“I filed an urgent interdict the following day to clear my name in the high court against Shaine Griqua and Moira McGluwa for defamation of my character and I won the case with costs.”

She added that the DFA was “very unethical, unprofessional and bitter” and that she was being “intimidated and harassed”.

DA provincial leader Harold McGluwa confirmed that the three DA councillors had been suspended by the provincial executive committee (PEC) from party political activities pending an investigation into a matter that has been handed over to the DA federal legal council (FLC).

“The councillors have been given the opportunity to respond to the allegations based on the party’s policies and procedures. These members are aware that the local government election process of Sol Plaatje is completed and we are awaiting processes from the party with regards to the election. The DA is in the process of finalising our lists pending the election date,” said McGluwa.

He indicated that the allegations pertaining to the deliberate manipulation of the scoring would be investigated by the FLC.

“The outcome was provided to the PEC, of which two of the councillors are aware as they are PEC members.”

McGluwa added that the complaint against Andrew Louw regarding his electricity metre was referred to Sol Plaatje Municipality as well as the provincial disciplinary committee for further investigation.

“Once the matter has been dealt with it will be referred to the PEC for discussion and referral. Sol Plaatje Municipality conducted their own investigation into the matter at our request. The media may at any given time refer this question to the Sol Plaatje Municipality, who are best suited to respond on this matter.”

Sol Plaatje Municipality spokesperson Sello Matsie stated that they were not at liberty to discuss the matter.

McGluwa indicated that the bus matter involving the three councillors in 2019 was still with the FLC.

“No outcome has been submitted to the province for discussion by the PEC as yet, hence the province cannot make a pronouncement on this matter.”

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