Mayhem as jobless man attacks councillor, destroys city property

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In a disturbing incident of alleged assault and property damage, a Stinkwater resident is set to face trial this week for his confrontation with a local council member.

Ernest Mahlangu, described as “arrogant and rebellious” by authorities, is scheduled to appear in the Moretele Magistrates Court on Tuesday, June 11. He is accused of attacking Tshwane Ward 59 Councillor William Kgopa and seriously injuring him during an altercation on February 5th.

The state alleges that the incident occurred when Mahlangu, who is reportedly unemployed and living in a shack, attempted to prevent city officials from removing sand from a stormwater drain in the Stinkwater Extension 5 area. According to the councillor, Mahlangu allegedly threatened to kill Kgopa, who had tried to intervene, and proceeded to throw bricks, smashing the windscreen of a tractor and hitting another resident’s car.

“He threatened to kill me while I was lying down in front of a tractor, preventing services from being rendered in the area while swearing at me calling me by my private parts out loud in public. Residents tried to chastise him, but he was stubborn and continued to throw bricks, smashing the windscreen of the tractor, hitting another resident’s car, and injuring him on the head,” he said.

Mahlangu, who is being represented by Legal Aid, has pledged to cooperate with the court as the case proceeds. During his previous appearance on March 25th, the matter had to be postponed due to a clerical error in the spelling of his name.

Despite the councillor’s stated forgiveness, authorities maintain that Mahlangu’s “unacceptable behaviour” must be addressed, as they seek to set an example and promote respect within the community. The case remains under investigation, with the next hearing scheduled for this Tuesday.

This confrontation has highlighted the ongoing tensions and challenges faced by local government officials as they work to provide services in some of Tshwane’s more disadvantaged areas. The outcome of Mahlangu’s trial will be closely watched by the Stinkwater community as they hope to see justice and accountability prevail.


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