UDM told to reinstate Chetty right away

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

The Durban high court has ordered the United Democratic Movement to re-instate expelled eThekwini municipal councillor, Arumugan Chetty.

Chetty had his membership terminated and was expelled last week on the eve of the opening of the floor-crossing window period.

The UDM accused him of fraud. Chetty took the matter to court and argued he was expelled simply because there were fears he was going to jump ship and join the DA.

But Bongani Msomi, the UDM's national chairman, said it was a coincidence that they sacked him on the eve of the floor-crossing.

He said the party had had enough of him tarnishing its image through his alleged corrupt activities.

But yesterday acting judge Kessie Naidu ordered the UDM to re-instate him with immediate effect.

Naidu said the decision to terminate Chetty's membership was unlawful as the party did not follow proper procedure in terms of its constitution prior to taking the decision to unilaterally terminate his membership.

He said he was disciplined without prior notification of charges and was not given the opportunity to present his side of the story.

An ecstatic Chetty said yesterday he was pleased by the ruling.

He said he was still weighing his options and his future within the UDM.

Chetty said he had been treated like a dog by the party.

But he said he held no grudges against it or its provincial leadership.

Msomi said the UDM would respect the decision of the court. He said the two parties would make their final arguments in court for the final decision.