‘Coup plot hitman’ is a liar, says lover

2010-07-18 09:20

The hired gun at the centre of an alleged plot to assassinate

KwaZulu-Natal premier Zweli Mkhize is a habitual liar who makes money peddling

information to top politicians.

These are some of the startling revelations in an explosive

affidavit made by one of alleged assassin Sizwe Mkhize’s girlfriends.

The alleged plot to kill Zweli, one of president Jacob Zuma’s

closest political allies, has sucked in provincial leaders of Cosatu, the SACP

and the ruling ANC and resulted in a task team being put together to probe the

claims.

The team, comprising of ANC provincial chairperson Willies Mchunu

(also safety and security MEC), Cosatu provincial chairperson Chris Ndlela and

SACP provincial chairperson James ­Nxumalo, has concluded its investigations but

declined to disclose its findings.

This week the task team’s Ndlela confirmed they had probed the

alleged plot but said the findings were confidential.

The elite crime-busting unit, the Hawks, is also investigating the

matter. Hawks detective warrant officer SW Zungu confirmed that he was

investigating the case but declined to give details.

The woman, who cannot be named to protect her identity, claims that

Sizwe Mkhize took money from different politicians in exchange for information,

a claim that could divide the ANC and its alliance partners should the accused

go to trial.

The woman will soon be taken into the witness protection programme

while Sizwe Mkhize and four other accused face charges of conspiracy to commit

murder and for possession of illegal firearms and ammunition.

They were arrested by the police dog unit on May 29 at Hillcrest

after a crime intelligence tip-off while allegedly on their way to the

KwaZulu-Natal premier’s home in Pietermaritzburg.

The suspects appeared at the Pinetown Regional Court on June 25 for

the third time and were remanded in custody. They will appear again on July 26

for bail application. They initially refused to ask for bail but now want

it.

City Press is in possession of Sizwe Mkhize’ document implicating

Cosatu, SACP and ANC provincial leaders in an alleged plot to overthrow the

premier. Their names are known to City Press.

All have denied knowledge of the alleged plot. We are also in

possession of the lover’s affidavit, which will form part of the evidence

against the accused when they appear in court.

“The plot was called Operation Coca-Cola,” reads part of the

affidavit.

The woman adds that after compiling the document implicating

tripartite alliance leaders Mkhize handed it to Nhlakanipho Ntombela, the ANC

deputy chief whip in the provincial legislature.

Ntombela this week confirmed knowledge of the document but declined

to confirm whether he had received it from Mkhize.

“I am not authorised to talk about that report. You must talk to

(ANC provincial secretary) Sihle Zikalala or Willies Mchunu,” he said.

Detective warrant officer Zungu would not say whether the lover

would be a state witness when the trial began, although she would be in the

state’s witness protection programme for her safety.

SACP provincial secretary Themba Mthembu this week said; “The

matter of that report was discussed in the tripartite alliance and a task team

was appointed to investigate its origins.”

Zweli Mkhize could not be reached for comment.

Sizwe Mkhize is no stranger to alleged plots to assassinate the

KwaZulu-Natal premier. In 2007 he made wild claims that he and another hired

gun, Bruce Mhlongo, were hired by top provincial leaders to kill the

premier.

The case didn’t go to court after he escaped from the witness

protection programme in Bloemfontein and claimed some unnamed members of the

Scorpions wanted him to change his statement and implicate President Jacob Zuma

in the alleged plot. He claimed he was offered R150 000.

 

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