IFP axes dissenting KZN youth chairman

2009-11-12 00:00

ACTING chairman of the IFP Youth Brigade in KwaZulu-Natal Muzi Simelane, who on Tuesday held a press briefing to endorse party national chairwoman Zanele KaMagwaza-Msibi to succeed Mangosuthu Buthelezi, was suspended yesterday.

Simelane said on Tuesday that the youth brigade believes KaMagwaza-Msibi is the only leader who will be able to unite the party. Simelane made the statement in spite of a public announcement by KaMagwaza-Msibi that she will not accept nomination for party presidential position.

A joint press statement by IFP provincial secretary Dr Bonginkosi Buthelezi and eThekwini IFP deputy secretary Joshua Mazibuko said the party has decided to suspend Simelane with immediate effect for three years.

The suspension came into effect on Monday and bans Simelane from holding any IFP office during the period.

“Following the completion of the disciplinary hearing against former eThekwini chairman of the IFP Youth Brigade [Simelane] on allegations of infringing the IFP constitution, the disciplinary committee of the IFP in eThekwini arrived at the verdict which found him guilty.”

The party statement said the verdict and sentence of the eThekwini IFP was ratified by the national executive committee of the IFP at a meeting held at its head offices on Monday.

The party said Simelane’s suspension in effect means that until three years have passed, he has no authority or mandate whatsoever to make any pronouncements in the name of or on behalf of the IFP or to associate himself with any structure or activity of the IFP anywhere South Africa.

Simelane claimed that his suspension was backdated to Monday to make it seem as if he was suspended before his pronouncements on Tuesday. He said the IFP eThekwini region was coerced into finding him guilty of infringing the party’s constitution.

He vowed to continue campaigning for KaMagwaza-Msibi to be the party’s next president, adding that one of the strategies to achieve this is to mobilise for support at grassroots level, like the ANC masses did for their president, Jacob Zuma.

The aim for IFP masses is to bring about transformation in the party. Simelane added.

Political analyst Protas Madlala observed that the latest developments at IFP once more indicate that the party is divided. He said he finds it strange that the national youth brigade, through its chairwoman Pat Lebenya-Ntanzi and party’s KZN youth are not talking in unison about the matter of the succession battle.

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