- The premier of the Western Cape joined the urgent application by the City of Cape Town for an interdict preventing harm during the EFF-organised national shutdown.
- Alan Winde’s counsel said threats had escalated since the EFF first announced its national protest over load shedding and governance.
- The EFF’s counsel said the party had agreed to all the terms set by the City which gave them permission to march.
The City of Cape Town’s urgent application for an interdict against the EFF to prevent violence and damage to property during the party’s shutdown programme began in the Western Cape High Court on Friday afternoon.
It started with an application by Premier Alan Winde for permission to intervene in the application.
He wants the order sought by the City to be extended to the province because the shutdown has been promoted as a “national shutdown”.
The EFF opposes the applications.
Winde’s application to intervene was heard first.
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“The premier is dealing with escalating threats,” said advocate Deidre Williams on his behalf.
“And they haven’t stopped, my lord,” she said, referring to videos on social media.
She said EFF leader Julius Malema had warned:
Whoever is going to try to stop me on the 20th will meet his maker.
“We now have moved to death threats, my lord,” she submitted
Messages to force the shutdown had spread to Hermanus, and retail shops had been told to close or “we may take food to the hungry”, she continued. “And all of this justifies the intervention of the premier.”
Golden Arrow has also received many queries and concerns regarding whether people can get to work on Monday.
The bus company said it would operate with contingency plans and monitoring. However, this would be unnecessary if the party only gathered for its march near the Cape Peninsula University of Technology and only marched as initially indicated.
The EFF’s counsel Msondezo Ka-Siboto said Winde was trying to piggyback on the City’s application and had not made his own case, let alone submitted a notice that mediation failed.
“In that case, the intervention must fail,” he argued.
He added that the City and the premier had known about the planned shutdown since 29 January, and therefore, Judge, Mark Sher should not accept that the application is urgent.
“Now they say, ‘Monday is coming’. March 20 is looming…” he said.
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Sher pointed out that Winde’s affidavit said he had decided to intervene after information was given to him on 14 March – three days ago.
Ka-Siboto said the province had not even made clear what harm it was expected to suffer.
The court discussed at length whether mediation would have been better than the urgent application.
Ka-Siboto said the EFF had met City officials and had already agreed to the City’s terms.
“The only reason we have this application is to embarrass the EFF before the shutdown,” he said.
Sher ruled that the premier could intervene in the matter.
The actual application for an urgent interdict was set to continue at 14:00 after a short break.
The EFF arranged a nationwide protest which it calls a “national shutdown” over the erratic supply of electricity, and the country’s governance, and wants President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign.
The application continues.