PE cops on high alert

Police in Port Elizabeth have stressed that they would be closely monitoring two major political rallies...

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Police in <?xml:namespace prefix="st1" ns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags"?><place w:st="on"><city w:st="on">Port Elizabeth have stressed that they would be closely monitoring two major political rallies taking place on Saturday.

The rallies were being hosted by political rivals Congress of the People and the African National Congress.

COPE will be launching its election manifesto at the Wolfson Stadium in Kwazakhele while the ANC would be holding a rally nearby.

The streets of the townships surrounding <city w:st="on"><place w:st="on">Port Elizabeth were steeped in politics as the region has always been regarded as an ANC stronghold and ruling party members made sure that COPE leaders were made aware of the fact.

During a bus tour that COPE officials took part in they stopped to visit a former ANC councilor who claimed ANC supporters burnt his home down.

He said he would remain a member of COPE regardless.

Meanwhile the party has been hard at work in the area while General Secretary Charlotte Lobe expressed how overwhelmed she was by the response, "I’m humbled by what I’ve seen."

The new party has banked on a strong showing in the province but the turnout of Saturday’s rally would give an indication of how likely that would be.