DA MP and deputy chief whip Jacques Julius says he was just defending himself against an attack by a “far bigger and younger” attacker who was trying to humiliate him in public, after a video of the fight started circulating on social media.
In the video, Julius can be seen going up against the man in a bright green Patriotic Alliance (PA) T-shirt, throwing several punches, while a third man attempts to separate the two, and onlookers cheer them on and laugh.
Julius’ sparring partner seems very calm throughout the incident, and doesn’t appear to be hitting back. He can be heard repeatedly telling the third man “talk to your friend”, but Julius says this video only tells half the story.
He told The Citizen the incident happened on Saturday afternoon, when he went to the shop with a friend to buy cigarettes and was confronted by the PA member, whose name is known to The Citizen.
He says while he was buying his cigarettes, he was subjected to a barrage of verbal abuse, during which the PA supporter swore at him and hurled several insults about him failing the community.
“They had their manifesto launch on Eldorado Park on Saturday, and I think they had a bit of a party,” Julius said. “I ignored him at first, and I told him I’m not here for that now.”
He claims the verbal abuse continued even after he got back into his car and lit up a cigarette.
“At this stage he swore at me, and I told him to f-off. He came to my window and pulled me on my jacket. When I got out, I was wearing slippers, and he hit me with my own slipper. He hit me about eight times in the face and on the head.
“This guys is far younger than me and it was humiliating. This is why I started attacking him back.
“The video unfortunately only shows me defending myself, but you can hear people laughing and trying to belittle me in front of young people.”
In the video, the pair are eventually separated by Julius’ friend, while people in the background continue jeering and laughing.
Julius said he opened a case of assault at the Randfontein Police station on Saturday.
On Monday morning, he went to the doctor to get a J88 form completed, and said he had suffered injuries to his right elbow and left shoulder.
In a statement, DA Gauteng chairperson Fred Nel claims the PA member also allegedly left with Julius’ car keys, and they were only returned after some DA members “wrestled” them from him.
“The DA has been informed that the Patriotic Alliance have instructed their members to instigate fights with DA members in an effort to frustrate them,” Nel wrote.
“It is concerning that the Patriotic Alliance proceeded to release a press statement with misinformation about the incident instead of disciplining their member.”