by Andrew Louw – DA Provincial Leader in the Northern Cape
Error! Filename not specified.
Date: 20 July 2018
The Democratic Alliance welcomes the fact that the mayor of Hantam Local Municipality, Roger Swarts, will be held personally liable for costs incurred in a legal matter against him.
Mr. Swartz is facing charges of assault laid by DA ward councillor, Jeanette Steenkamp, following an altercation in his office earlier this year. The trial was set to start today in the Calvinia Magistrates Court, but had to be postponed as the mayor’s legal team failed to request condonation for the late submission of their legal documents.
The ANC-led municipality had originally forced through a council resolution in terms of which the municipality would carry the legal costs he incurs. We are happy that the mayor’s legal representative today confirmed that he is acting on the mayor’s behalf, not the council’s behalf, and that the mayor will therefore be held personally liable for the costs.
It is not reasonable to expect that residents of a cash-strapped municipality must bail out a bully.
The mayor has become a law unto himself and we again call on the ANC-led provincial government to take a firm stand against the intimidation and bullying tactics he uses. The presence of so many ANC-members at the court today in his support is an indication, however, that the ANC only pays lip service to the ideals of equality and multi-party democracy.
It is also remarkable to note the absence of the ANCWL, who are sometimes vocal outside courts where matters of gender-based violence are heard. Their absence indicates that the ANCWL only cares about victims of gender-based violence if they are members of the right political party.
We look forward to resuming the matter on the 17th of August 2018 and we remain confident that the outcome will be in our favour. We do not tolerate any form of violence and the actions of the mayor must be condemned in the harshest terms.
DA Provincial Leader in the Northern Cape
082 383 6914
071 251 5558