Gauteng government defends Lesufi amid Joburg explosion accusations

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The Gauteng government has sought to defend the actions of Premier Panyaza Lesufi in the aftermath of the blast in the Johannesburg CBD.

One person died and nearly 50 people were injured after the blast ripped through Lillian Ngoyi Street, formerly Bree Street on Wednesday afternoon. Authorities are yet to establish the cause of the explosion.

The City’s Member of the Mayoral Committee for Safety and Security, Mgcini Tshwaku, has accused Lesufi of politicising the incident.

Tshwaku explains his issue with Lesufi’s reaction to the explosion.

“What Lesufi was saying yesterday was absolute nonsense. He did not understand what was going on. We told him that we are still being briefed by the technical experts to get to the bottom of what is happening and will this blast occur again. So, we decided that he can go ahead and do his own briefing, and, as the city, we are going to understand what happened. He has been playing this politics. Lesufi, when he goes on TV, there was no acknowledgment of the city. He just comes and rants and says something that he does not understand.”

The spokesperson of the provincial government Vuyo Mhaga says, “Ever since this thing started, we have been working together. It was just to make sure that we don’t disrespect our colleagues after we made an appointment with them at 1 PM and we couldn’t say we need to make it at 2:30. When the premier left there, we did not feel there was any sort of disrespect. We brought different experts. That is why Lesufi said if there is new information, there are experts and police there. We need all hands on deck. Let us remove politics because who really speaks, as long as we have got the new information to alleviate fears and anxiety, it will be much more welcome.”