Oudtshoorn: It is Anton Bredell who must act - Marius Fransman

ANC WCape leader replies to Patricia de Lille's open letter to President Zuma


Dear Ms De Lille

Your open letter to the President of the African National Congress, “Anti-democratic practices of the ANC in Oudtshoorn”, dated 20 May 2015 refers.

I write in my capacity as provincial chairperson of the ANC in the Western Cape.

One would have thought that you would not deflect the matter from the province to national but would act here where you have the power to do so. Yet the "will of the people" of Oudtshoorn is simply not a priority; but to score cheap political points is.

As the Democratic Alliance provincial leader, you fail to instruct your own DA provincial Member of the Executive Committee (MEC), Anton Bredell, to act. However, no such instruction will come from your office simply because as long as mud can be thrown at the ANC, even at the expense of the people of Oudtshoorn, the DA will continue to try and score the cheap publicity points it so desperately seeks. 

Need I remind you that pre-2011, before the ANC coalition took power, Oudtshoorn was in a shambles under DA rule. A SIU Report was damming of the DA administration and eventually the municipality was placed under administration. Good governance in Oudtshoorn has never been the DA’s goal and the people under that municipality know this.

You may recall too that I was nearly attacked in Oudtshoorn in May 2013, when trying to bring about stability. The people who wanted to attack me were those who went to the DA and who today represent the DA. All of this seditious instability was orchestrated by leading figures in the DA provincially, including some MEC’s. This was the start of the crisis in Oudtshoorn. 

Be that as it may, I once again find the DA’s motif in the letter: Double standards to apply one set of rules nationally and another provincially. Hypocrisy at its best! 

Nationally, the DA has a challenge with the “will of the people”, as you term it in your letter, and so at every opportunity it uses the courts to usurp this will of the people. However, here in the Western Cape, the will of the people is more important than the rule-of-law and going to the courts is not an option. In fact, it is termed “...frivolous actions in court...”. 

At the same time, I can cite instances where the DA and you specifically have not necessarily defended the “will of the people”. What about the will of the people in Swellendam? What about the will of the people when the DA locks ANC councillors out of a sitting of the Cape Town City Council?

The ANC enjoys overwhelming support in Oudtshoorn. We, therefore, are deeply concerned by the state of the municipality and have even instituted internal processes, including appealing to the national ANC minister for intervention. Yet even so, the ANC must at all times be vigilant to ensure that it does not politically interfere with administrative processes in the municipality, thereby upholding the law and respecting the decisions of our courts.

But you can lawfully act. As a mayor in local government you are aware of the legislative framework in which the MEC has the full power to make recommendation to provincial cabinet and the matter be finalised in the NCOP. We therefore challenge you, as we have to the Premier and MEC on numerous occasions before, to instruct the MEC and Premier to do just that and recommend either placing the municipality under administration or agreeing to some cooperative agreement with national government.


Marius Fransman (MPL)
ANC Western Cape Chairperson

Issued by the ANC Western Cape, May 20 2015