ACM in court papers demands apology from ANCYL KZN
Johannesburg - The Active Citizens Movement has filed a court application for contempt of court against the ANC Youth League, the organisation said on Friday.
This, its spokesperson Yashica Padia, said was in response to the disruption of the Ahmed Kathrada Memorial meeting on April 9 and infringement of a court order.
Padia said prior to the Kathrada memorial the Youth League had threatened to disrupt the meeting and prevent any speaker from criticising President Jacob Zuma.
She said ACM applied for and obtained an interdict ordering the league to refrain from disrupting the meeting.
“In addition, the court order specified that the youth league does not harass, threaten or intimidate anyone attending the meeting. It was further stated that the league inform its members via the press and social media, about the terms and spirit of the court order, prior to the meeting.
“The ACM believes that its basic constitutional rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of assembly were violated when members of the youth league disrupted the guest speakers and tore down posters at the memorial meeting.”
Padia said after the meeting, the ACM through its attorneys gave the ANCYL an opportunity to apologise.
“However, it refused to do so, stating in the media that it has nothing to apologise for, blaming the disruption by its members on what it termed ‘provocation’ by Pravin Gordhan, when he criticised corruption in government.
“The address by Dr Zweli Mkhize was also disrupted as he is perceived to be in the anti Zuma camp. The conduct of the members of the league was disrespectful to and offended all in attendance, in particular the family of the late Mr Ahmed Kathrada.”
The ACM, she said, was not at liberty to discuss the merits of the case.
“In the contempt of court application, the ACM is asking the court to order Mr Thanduxolo Sabelo and the ANCYL to publish a detailed apology to the Kathrada family, the ACM and the general public, for the offence and hurt caused by their violation of the order.
“This apology has to be published in provincial and national newspapers, in both English and IsiZulu. The organisation is also asking the courts to order the youth league to pay certain sums of money to a deserving non-governmental organisation working to support vulnerable children, an issue that was close to Mr Kathrada’s heart.”
Padia said if the ANCYL failed or refused to do so, “the court is being asked to authorise the arrest of Mr Sabelo and the attachment of assets of the ANCYL.”
“The view of the ACM is that the ANCYL cannot show such abject disrespect for the law. If left unchecked by the courts, the ANCYL will be emboldened to act even more outrageously than they have already done.”