A high-profile member of the ANC Youth League in Alexandra was arrested early on Wednesday morning for allegedly planning to assassinate several ANCYL branch members.
The man was arrested after he sent an SMS to several people allegedly involved in the plot to kill members of a different faction in Alexandra – but he sent one to the wrong person, who alerted the police.
The SMS read: “Don’t wrry I hv met with Mgaga and he agreed on our plan of assassinating Simelane. Mgaga gave us a list of trouble makers dat need 2b eliminated ASAP: Joe Nyandeni, Xolani Msimango, Tshepo, Thami Manyoni, Lebo, Nomonde and Siya. I hve assign him 2 make sure dat their addresses r accurate and dat there r on a location of target. Arrgmnts r on place. Alex will b in peace aftr dis. We will communicate.”
Lieutenant-Colonel Katlego Mogale said investigations into a case of conspiracy to commit murder against a man in his 20s was under way.
Some of the people mentioned in the SMS are employed as community liaison officers at the offices of the disputed Alexandra Renewal Project.
They were brought into the ARP by its director, Job Sithole, who, The Star understands, is no longer wanted by the Alex youth league to continue leading the project.
Last year, Sithole received death threats after he uncovered corruption within the ARP.
This was allegedly linked to ANC councillors who were linked to the allocation of housing and jobs.
Sithole had reported the threats to three police stations at the time.
Sithole refused to comment on the arrest of the ANCYL official, but said it was well known that the man was responsible for many problems experienced by the ARP, and had led a public campaign to get him removed from his post.
When Sithole took over the ARP in 2009, he suspended 12 liaison officers, all Alexandra residents, appointed by the ARP to assist with the allocation of housing. Sithole laid charges of fraud and corruption against them.
Then the threats started.
Earlier this week, Limpopo ANCYL secretary Jacob Lebogo had to leave his house after an attempt to assassinate him. A member of the SA National Defence Force and a police officer were arrested.
Police said the men were suspected of hiring hitmen and had tailed Lebogo and ANC member Peter Mokaba and regional chairman Lawrence Mapoulo. – The Star