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Four Community Safety department officials suspended in wake of Albert Fritz scandal

Sources said the allegations dated back to when he was MEC for Social Development, and that some were levelled against him by young employees. Picture: Sam Clark/African News Agency

Sources said the allegations dated back to when he was MEC for Social Development, and that some were levelled against him by young employees. Picture: Sam Clark/African News Agency

Published Jan 25, 2022

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Cape Town - Four more Western Cape government officials have been suspended in the wake of the sexual assault scandal involving suspended Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz.

Odette Cason, from the office of Premier Alan Winde, confirmed that four officials in the Ministry of Community Safety have been placed on precautionary suspension by the Head of Department for Community Safety, while various allegations of misconduct were investigated by the Provincial People Management Unit.

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This comes after Winde released a statement on Sunday evening indicating he had suspended Fritz following "serious allegations" pertaining to his conduct.

Sources said the allegations dated back to when he was MEC for Social Development, and that some were levelled against him by young employees.

Cason said given that the officials in question were public servants those matters and the current investigations were being conducted in accordance with labour law that apply in that regard, in respect of which the premier’s office has no involvement.

"We do hope that those investigations too will be finalised expeditiously and any further requests for updates in those matters should hence be directed to the office of the Head of Department for Community Safety," said Cason.

Soon after the news of his suspension surfaced on Monday, Fritz asked to be excused as the provincial DA leader until the end of February.

SACP provincial secretary Benson Ngqentsu said the fact that the premier did not divulge reasons for the suspension exposed the level at which the provincial government was prepared to hide the shenanigans in the DA.

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Ngqentsu said the DA had failed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that they have a credible and ethical leadership screening process.

GOOD Party secretary-general Brett Herron said Fritz was the fourth member of Winde’s “cabinet of integrity” whose integrity had been brought into question.

Herron said Fritz replaced Bonginkosi Madikizela as the DA Western Cape leader when Madikizela resigned as an MEC and provincial leader after being exposed for lying about his academic qualifications.

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He said Madikizela was also found by the public protector to have breached the executive code of ethics after lying in the legislature.

He said the public protector had also made findings about ethical breaches against Winde himself, and MEC Anton Bredell (twice).

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