- Andile Lungisa spent his first night in prison on Thursday after trying in vain to have his sentence overturned
- Now, citizens are debating the value of the case against him with some feeling he is a victim of internal ANC vendettas
- EFF leader Julius Malema has weighed in on the situation, adamant that Lungisa did nothing wrong
PAY ATTENTION: Click “See First” under the “Following” tab to see Briefly.co.za News on your News Feed!
Andile Lungisa was caught on camera assaulting a Democratic Alliance official during a sitting of the Nelson Mandela Bay council in 2016.
Nevertheless, some people feel that he is in prison not due to his crime but because he was a firm supporter of the 'wrong' ANC comrades.
#FreeAndileLungisa trended on Friday morning just hours after Lungisa arrived to begin serving his two-year sentence for the assault.
Those who were supportive of his release claimed that party members loyal to President Cyril Ramaphosa had pushed for Lungisa's imprisonment.
Surprisingly, Economic Freedom Fighter leader Julius Malema is among those who support calls for the ANC councillor to be set free.
Taking to social media, Malema voiced his opinion on the debacle as well as his support for Lungisa:
"Lungisa did nothing wrong, and I support him. I will soon visit him in jail and support all initiatives to get him out of jail soon. Be strong my DP, you are our generational deputy president."
Carl Niehaus, who had earlier voiced the opinion that the ordeal was politically motivated, commented that:
"So some people are calling me names for standing by comrade Andile Lungisa. I don’t care, they can say whatever they want. Enough is enough. I will stand by my comrade as a victim of political factionalism."
Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that the Gauteng RET President Zuma Support Group has condemned what it views as factional political victimization of Lungisa with the organisation pledging their support.
In a statement issued on the situation, the group voiced their concerns that Lungisa is being targeted commenting that:
"The Gauteng RET President Zuma Support Group is deeply concerned that comrade Andile Lungisa is specifically targeted and victimized because of the political beliefs that he holds, and his unwavering and outspoken support for Radical Economic Transformation."
The group called upon the ANC to lift the suspension of Lungisa's membership which came in response to his sentencing, continuing that:
"We furthermore urge our beloved organization, the ANC, to immediately lift the suspension of comrade Lungisa's ANC membership that was so rashly imposed on him by the ANC in the Eastern Cape. It is our considered opinion that this was an act of blatant political, factional, victimisation that should not be tolerated. It cannot be allowed to prevail."
Enjoyed reading our story? Download BRIEFLY's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major South African news!