Reverend Phumezo Jaxa’s wife dropped the assault charges but the ANC suspended him anyway.

A day after he appeared in court following an alleged assault of his wife, the ANC has suspended the membership of Reverend Phumezo Jaxa, who chairs the Ethics Committee in the council of Buffalo City Metro, East London.

Jaxa, who spent Sunday night in police cells, is also a ward 48 councillor in the metro and a minister of the National Baptist Church of South Africa.

Charges dropped

The wife quickly dropped the charges against Jaxa during his first appearance in court on Monday, while the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) was trying to help her open a protection order against him.

ALSO READ: ANC clergyman spends Sunday night in jail

However, on Tuesday, ANC Eastern Cape announced that it has resolved to suspend Jaxa’s membership because the party ought to be at the forefront of the fight against gender-based violence.

“We remain resolute and unshaken in the belief of a society free from all kinds of abuse, gender-based violence, crime and acts of injustice against any form of human kind. We should take lead at the front through noble illustrations, even if such acts are committed by our very own leaders or members of the ANC,” said ANC Eastern Cape spokesperson Gift Ngqondi.

Second councillor suspended

The party also announced the suspension of the membership of Ward 23 councillor at Winnie Madikizela – Mandela Local Municipality, Zanovuyo Dyarvane, after his arrest and incarceration due to allegations of theft.

Ngqondi said suspension letters have been written and served to both Jaxa and Dyarvane.

READ: Zuma suspended ‘to prevent further damage to ANC’s image’

In line with the 2021 step-aside rule of the ANC National Executive Committee, Dyarvane could find himself having to resign from his position.

Step-aside looming

The ANC’s step-aside policy states that those who have been charged with corruption or other serious crimes must step aside within 30 days of being formally charged.

“The affected members must update the Provincial Secretary’s Office (PSO) on a monthly basis regarding progress with their cases. The decision by a member to step aside will be reviewed by the relevant structure of the organisation every six months,” said Ngqondi.  

Jaxa was approached for comment but failed to respond before deadline. His response will be added once received.

Efforst to get a comment from Dyarvane also fell flat. His comment will be added once received.

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