The DA has dismissed as “nonsense” allegations that George council Speaker Gerrie Pretorius violated Covid-19 regulations when allowing a fellow DA councillor lona Kritzinger to travel to vote in the mayoral election while in quarantine on Friday.
This has led the opposition to open an attempted murder case against Pretorius, charging that he violated Section 7 of the lockdown regulations.
EFF provincial chairperson Melikhaya Xego said the case against Pretorius was opened on Friday at the Conville Police station in George. The EFF has also learnt that the same Speaker admitted to having allowed two other undisclosed councillors who also posed a health risk to participate in the proceedings.
“The EFF Western Cape condemns this alleged criminality by the Speaker and submits that through his actions the Speaker deliberately put the lives of other public representatives at risk by allowing councillors who should have been under quarantine to participate in the meeting,” he said.
Xego called for the election process to be declared null and void as it happened under unlawful circumstances where Covid-19 regulations were contravened. The virtual meeting, with a physical secret ballot, saw the election of DA Councillor Leon van Wyk as George mayor. Responding to the allegations, Pretorius said he had taken note of the EFF statement and would await developments.
DA George constituency head Geordin Hill-Lewis said the councillor tested negative two days before the meeting. So their allegations are just nonsense. They don’t even have the basic facts. She wasn’t travelling at all, and she wasn’t in quarantine. Her son tested positive and she stays with her son, so she was exposed to someone who was positive,” said Hill-Lewis. We are confident that the election of Mayor Van Wyk is the first important step towards restoring the integrity of the George Council, and will bring with it the ‘DA difference’ that residents expect from us,” said Hill-Lewis.
ANC chief whip Nomawethu Jantjies-Gushman said: “The Speaker wanted the councillors to step out and re-enter when those whom he deems to be a health risk finished voting, forgetting that there will be officials who can also be infected should that happen.
“We said the regulations of the National Disaster Management Act are very clear, these people should not be there at all. Police spokesperson Malcom Pojie said: “The investigation is in an early stage and will be submitted to the senior public prosecutor for a decision as soon as it has been concluded. No arrests have been made.
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