Rape-accused ANC councillor opts to step aside
A rape-accused ANC councillor from Alexandra, Johannesburg, has branded himself a “proponent for the gender struggle” and opted to step aside from his deployment with immediate effect.
In a letter addressed to ANC Greater Johannesburg region secretary Dada Morero and Gauteng secretary Jacob Khawe, the rape-accused man said his voluntary decision to step aside from his position as proportional representation (PR) councillor was to give himself “an opportunity to clear my name away from my everyday responsibilities as a public representative of the ANC”.
The accused, who in terms of the Sexual Offences Act cannot be named until he has pleaded, is out on R2,000 bail.
Khawe was not immediately available for comment.
“I note that the ANC has no current policy position on accused stepping aside from their positions and I note that the NEC has not finalised any guidelines in this regard,” the man said.
“However, given the seriousness of such an allegation levelled against me, as well as my steadfast commitment to end all forms of gender-based violence and attain a non-sexist society, I have taken a voluntary decision to request a special leave of absence with immediate effect from my position as PR councillor.”
In the letter, the accused made it clear that he intended to plead not guilty to the charges.
He went on to declare his “utmost respect for the ANC and all its principles, values and policy positions”.
He also took the opportunity to pledge his commitment “to all forms of gender equality and the urgent need to end the current and persistent scourge of gender-based violence in our country”.
The case was postponed to February 22.