People have started to gather outside the Emadadeni Magistrate’s Court in Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, where African National Congress (ANC) Mayor Ntuthuko Mahlaba is expected to appear.

Mahlaba is expected to apply for bail. Mahlaba is facing four charges including murder, attempted murder and two counts of conspiracy to commit murder.

The appearance is related to the killing of ANC Youth League Emalahleni regional deputy chair Wandile Ngubeni.

ANC members clad in party regalia are singing struggle songs.

Security has been tightened inside and outside the court ahead of his appearance.

Some members are carrying placards in his support, which read: “Hands off our mayor.”

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