Winde yet to explain Fritz suspension amid sexual assault claims

On Sunday night, Premier Alan Winde's office issued a statement informing the public of the decision to suspend MEC Albert Fritz, without divulging reasons, and until now, the office has not been available to shed any more light on the matter.

FILE: Western Cape Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz. Picture: Albert Fritz/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has yet to share the exact reasons why Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz has been suspended.

Fritz is also the interim provincial party leader.

News24 on Monday reported it has to do with sexual assault allegations, but this has not been confirmed to Eyewitness News despite attempts to get more details.

READ MORE:

- WC MEC Fritz suspended, premier's office investigating misconduct claims

- WC ANC calls on Premier Winde to give reason for MEC Fritz's suspension

On Sunday night, Winde's office issued a statement informing the public of the decision to suspend Fritz, without divulging reasons, and until now, the office has not been available to shed any more light on the matter.

Acting chairperson of the Western Cape Community Policing Forum Fransina Lukas believes it's important they know why Fritz has been suspended.

“One would want the premier to divulge the details, so at least as a concerned stakeholder in the fight against crime, the CPF knows exactly what is going on, without having to speculate.”

She's concerned it will impact their work: “It's going to have implications on the CPF as we work very closely with the department and the MEC is actually leading, giving direction to the department.”

Lukas said they were calling on the premier to appoint an interim Community Safety MEC while the investigation continued.

At the same time, GOOD Party’s Brett Heron said Fritz’ suspension had placed a blow on the Western Cape’s integrity.

In a statement released on Monday afternoon, the party said it was rumoured that the allegations have been brought to the surface, now, in order to create a space in the Western Cape Cabinet for former Mayor of Cape Town, Dan Plato.

“Plato wanted to return to the city as mayor, launching his campaign last year at a Table View Church later implicated in the case of fraud and money laundering of COVID relief funds ,presently running against councillor Nora Grose. A seat on Winde's Cabinet would provide Plato with a suitable soft landing. The people of the Western Cape deserve better,” the statement further read.

Fritz has temporarily stepped down from his position as DA Western Cape interim leader as he faces serious allegations levelled against him.

DA Western Cape chairperson Jaco Londt said: “We have asked the MEC to step back from his role as leader to focus on the investigation and we view them in a very serious light.”