The South African Opposition Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has threatened that it would take it upon itself to end Operation Dudula raids and its activities across Gauteng.

The party had on Wednesday accompanied its activist Victor Ramerafe to Dobsonville police station in Soweto to open a case of assault, intimidation, and housebreaking against the group’s frontman Nhlanhla “Lux” Dlamini.

Ramerafe accused Dlamini and his group of raiding and vandalizing his house on Sunday following accusations that he was selling drugs. However, police who were called to the scene could not find any drugs.

The Dudula movement also staged their own picket outside the station in defense of Dlamini. The police had their hands full as they tried to keep the groups apart.

The Dudula groupings have been mainly conducting raids and evictions of people suspected to be illegal immigrants as informal traders in Soweto and Alexandra. They have spread to other townships. The government and various political parties have condemned their controversial operations.

EFF national spokesperson Sinawo Thambo accused the police of escorting Dlamini and his group to conduct illegal raids and called on EFF supporters to block any future raids conducted by the group in townships.

“We opened this case against this bastard toy soldier whose only ability is to wear bulletproof vests to go fight Somalis and old people. It is time that he gets arrested and we want to tell the police that they must stop being bodyguards of Operation Dudula and watching them violate our people,” Thambo said.

Thambo called on the police to ensure that Dlamini was arrested within a week, failing which the party would apprehend and hand him to the police.

“If we see him in Alexandra or Soweto or Dobsonville we are going to hand him over to you in a different condition. When he goes back to you, he will come back not the same man. He must stay in his house until they investigate this case and conclude it. We want justice for this old man. That justice must be material,” he said.

A SAPS forensic team visited Ramerafe’s home to comb the scene, which included taking photos of the alleged vandalism and fingerprints.

Thambo said the party had moved to defend its member Ramerafe, 59 because he had “been victimized by a toy soldier who is walking around the streets of Soweto pretending to have an influence”.

“He [Dlamini] has decided to attack the vulnerable. He has decided to attack those who cannot defend themselves in order to push his own agenda, which is sponsored by Stellenbosch and his white funders that are sustaining his lifestyle here,” he said.

Operation Dudula activist Cheese Kalakala said he was taken aback by the criminal case against Dlamini, who was not present on Wednesday. He accused the party of lodging the case against the same community that voted for it.

“We vote for them and they open cases against us? It is my first time in SA to see a political party opening a case against the community,” Kalakala said.

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