ANC disappointed with ‘lack of urgency’ in initiation probe

2013-05-22 13:32

It was disappointing that an investigation into the deaths of 27 initiates in Mpumalanga was seemingly not urgent, the ANC has said.

“The ANC is very disappointed that ever since the first pronouncement of deaths of our young men ... there does not seem to have been any urgency in investigating the circumstances that led to their death,” ANC spokesperson Keith Khoza said today.

He said the party supported the culture of initiating young men into manhood, but was worried they continued to undergo initiations while the causes of deaths had not been determined yet.

On Monday, Mpumalanga police said 27 boys had died in initiation schools in the past two weeks. Spokesperson Colonel Leonard Hlathi said 26 of the deaths were being investigated as murder cases and one remained an inquest.

The information gathered during the investigations would be taken to the national director of public prosecutions for a decision on how to proceed, said Hlathi.

Khoza said investigations into the matter would bring relief to the parents of the boys who died.

“We expect that those behind this cultural practice, including provincial governments and traditional leaders, will assure the public and the nation that these will never recur,” he said.

Yesterday President Jacob Zuma said he was shocked and outraged by the deaths. He called for swift justice to be meted out to those responsible.

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