From the news desk

Pagad denies rumours of leadership rift

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The leadership of the People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (Pagad) will be meeting with their legal team to discuss possible action against fifty expelled members, amid a vicious mudslinging campaign aimed at fracturing the organisation. At a press briefing on Thursday, Pagad spokesperson Haroun Orrie claimed that members have been collecting money from the public under the banner of Pagad for their own personal gain, which contradicts the organisations constitution.

Last month, VOC News was made aware of rumours circulating on social media which alleged that the current Pagad leadership will be stepping down. These rumours were confirmed to be untrue by the organisation’s national Co-ordinator, Abdus Salaam Ebrahim, who claimed the allegations were part of a smear campaign by the suspended members.

Through tip-offs from members of the public, Orrie said the organisation then conducted a full investigation and found evidence of some of its members extorting money from gangsters, drug lords and business people in the cape flats.

After unsuccessful efforts to try and address the matter internally, Orrie added that the expelled members have gone on to threaten Pagad’s executive members.

“Despite the attempts by a self-appointed, independent and objective arbitrator, Mr Aslam Toefy, having met with them to discuss possible reconciliation, they continue with their relentless onslaught against this noble movement. Shame on them!” the organisation said in a statement.

“We are consulting with our legal team and once there is enough evidence, we will be laying criminal charges against the expelled members,” Orrie continued.

The reason behind not allowing legal intervention at this point stems from the organisation’s attempts to first allow those expelled members to correct their wrongs and pledge their commitment to change, said Orrie. The identities of the members in question were not disclosed at the press briefing.

Orrie has warned the public to be aware of individuals asking for money on behalf of Pagad. All members will have an authorised letter before seeking any donations from the public.

“These people have no right to speak for Pagad, do not represent us, cannot use the logo and cannot collect funds on behalf of the organisation.” VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)

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