Winde fires suspended Fritz from MEC post over sexual misconduct claims

This follows an independent investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct reportedly against young women recruited to work for his office.

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

CAPE TOWN - Suspended Western Cape Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz has now been removed from the post with immediate effect.

This after the completion of an independent investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct reportedly against young women recruited to work for his office.

Premier Alan Winde is meeting with complainants today and he’s confirmed at this stage no criminal complaints have been opened with police.

Winde said that it was clear that Fritz was not a fit and proper person to hold any position in his executive council.

He revealed that the independent investigation had found sufficient credibility in the allegations of sexual misconduct.

The report, handed to Winde on Sunday, also found sufficient credibility in the allegations of alcohol abuse and sufficient evidence that Fritz created an environment conducive to sexual harassment, or alternatively, taking advantage of young women sexually.

Advocate Jennifer Williams interviewed 18 witnesses, including the complainants, collateral witnesses and Fritz himself, as well as his own nominated witnesses.

Photographs, emails, videos, text messages and correspondence were submitted.

Fritz was afforded an opportunity to respond to the allegations and denied them.

Winde expressed his anger and said that it was unfathomable that this was someone who had been tasked with protecting the youth and communities.

"Having gone through this report carefully, it is clear to me that Mr Fritz is not a fit and proper person to hold any position in my executive council. He has therefore been removed, in line with the powers vested in me by the Constitution.

"I am extremely angry at what appears to be verifiable incidences of serious sexual misconduct by him, in circumstances which in and of themselves were inappropriate. That it is by someone who has been tasked to protect our youth and our communities, is to me unfathomable. It is a shocking violation of his oath of office and the principles of our constitutional democracy," Winde said.

He said that he would on Tuesday again offer the complainants his support should they opt to pursue criminal charges, for which he believed there was sufficient evidence.