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ANC in Western Cape wants SAPS provincial commissioner to probe sexual assault allegations against Albert Fritz

Suspended MEC Albert Fritz is in the firing line with calls for police to investigate allegations of sexual assault against him. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Suspended MEC Albert Fritz is in the firing line with calls for police to investigate allegations of sexual assault against him. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Published Jan 27, 2022

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Cape Town – The ANC in the Western Cape has written to Provincial Commissioner Lieutenant General Thembisile Patekile to request him to investigate whether the allegations of misconduct by provincial community safety MEC Albert Fritz amounts to criminal conduct or not.

Premier Alan Winde suspended Fritz after the allegations emerged.

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Media reports, however, suggest these allegations relate to the sexual assault of young employees in Fritz's office. According to reports four other officials have also been suspended.

Fritz has stepped down as leader of the DA in the province.

ANC provincial spokesperson Sifiso Mtsweni said the party intended to lay charges against both Fritz and Premier Alan Winde. The charges against Winde would relate to the fact that he had allegedly concealed information.

Winde had said he had been informed of this in November 2021, but advised the complainants to provide affidavits, which they did last week.

According to Winde's statement, more victims are likely to come forward.

Advocate Jennifer Williams has been appointed to investigate the matter.

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Mtsweni said on Thursday Winde was trying to conceal information as he sat on it from last November.

"The Premier’s own department has now since approached the State Attorney to procure the services of an independent investigator to conduct an ’external examination.’ No terms of reference have been provided for this investigation as yet.

"The ANC would also like to establish whether the Premier has at least informed the office of the Provincial Commissioner about this matter, given that he is on record as saying that he has advised the complainants of their rights to lay charges with the SAPS," said Mtsweni.

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In the letter to the provincial commissioner, the ANC requested his office to launch an inquiry into this matter.

They said the provincial commissioner needed to ensure no stone was left unturned.

This was an investigation that required serious attention from senior officials in the police.

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In his letter to the provincial commissioner ANC leader in the provincial legislature Cameron Dugmore asked Patekile if Winde had informed the police.

He said the ANC had established that no criminal charges had been laid against Fritz so far.

He said they want the office of the provincial commissioner to ”launch an inquiry into this matter to investigate whether the allegations themselves amount to criminal conduct or not, and secondly to inform those who have lodged complaints to the Premier about the matter in which the SAPS can provide both counselling and assurances of absolute confidentiality should they come forward.”

Dugmore said he was concerned that the involvement of the premier was untenable.

Mtsweni said they were encouraged that Patekile had received their letter.

"We are encouraged that the Provincial Commissioner has acknowledged receipt of our submissions and we will closely monitor this matter," Mtsweni said.

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