by Safiyia Stanfley – Federal Deputy Leader of the Democratic Alliance Women’s Network
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Date: 30 April 2018
The Democratic Alliance Women’s Network reiterates the earlier call of the DA for the COGHSTA MEC, Bentley Vass, to investigate the bullying leadership of the Hantam Municipality.
The fact that the ANC-led provincial government has not taken a strong stand against the mayor, Roger Swartz, following his pattern of aggressive and bullying behaviour towards two female ward councillors from the DA shows that the ANC does not take the rights of women seriously. The ward councillors carry the public’s vote of confidence, but are being harassed by the mayor’s verbal tirades and prevented from doing the jobs they were elected to do. Instead of bringing an end to the mayor’s game of intimidation, the ANC-led provincial government sits idly by and allows him to behave like a bully.
Following an aggressive outburst by the mayor in March 2018, both DA councillors opened cases against him. Councillor Opperman’s charge of crimen inuria was referred back to the council by the Loeriesfontein Magistrate’s Court.
The charge of assault laid by councillor Steenkamp has been postponed and will be heard on 22 May in the Nieuwoudtsville Magistrate’s Court. We will be attending the court hearing on that day to show our solidarity and DAWN will continue to support the DA councillors.
We trust that the court will send a strong message that the intimidation and assault of a woman by a man is never acceptable.