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SAMWU Condemns the Use of State Institutions to Protect VBS Looters

15 November 2018

The South African Municipal Workers’ Union (SAMWU) notes with dismay the use of state institutions such as the police to intimidate workers at the Ephraim Mogale Local Municipality.

The police are essentially being used to protect VBS Looters who have cost the citizens of the municipality over R84 million which was illegally invested with the VBS Mutual Bank. Now that the bank has been liquidated, there are no prospects of the money returned to the municipality, this will have dire consequences for service delivery in the municipality.

The Ephraim Mogale Local Municipality has, instead of attending to issues which have compromised good governance and accountability at the institution rushed to court to seek an urgent interdict preventing members picketing.

The Municipality claims that workers are on an illegal strike whereas workers have been peacefully protesting demanding that those who have compromised service delivery by illegally investing monies with VBS be held accountable.

Today workers went to the Marble Hall Police Station to lay criminal charges against the VBS looters, instead of being assisted in bringing the squanders of the community’s money to book, workers were arrested because the municipality had laid a charge that workers are illegally striking at the municipality.

We will not be deterred by attempts to silence us through the use of state institutions while the real criminals are enjoying protection from the police. VBS looters should all be jailed and the money which they illegally transferred with the promise of kickbacks to VBS should be recouped from them personally.

We will be approaching the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) to lay charges of abuse of power and intimidation against the Marble Hall Police. We further demand the immediate and unconditional release of our 8 members who are currently being illegally detained by the Marble Hall Police.

Issued by SAMWU Limpopo

Patrick Aphane

Provincial Secretary

076 785 9022