MK cadre Bhengu laid to rest

2011-01-10 00:00

SOUTH African Communist Party (SACP) leader and Minister of Higher Education Dr Blade Nzimande came out guns blazing against what he described as “tender-driven development in place of people-driven development” currently taking place in some areas of Pietermaritzburg.

Nzimande said this while giving a keynote address during the funeral of former uMkhonto Wesizwe cadre and South African National Defence Force member Major Winboy Wandile Bhengu at Lay Ecumenical Centre in Edendale yesterday.

In a clear reference to the building of the Edendale Mall, which is currently under construction whilst there are also plans to build another mall at the crossroads, Nzimande questioned “the intelligence behind the building of malls next to another mall”.

“… When there is development in the area, people should be consulted. But when it’s a project to give out tenders to certain people, people are not consulted.

“There are people who are wrongly interpreting our stand and say communists don’t support the building of malls. Malls are important, but when they are constructed, small stores and tuck shops in their vicinity are forced to close down. We must ensure that we don’t bring shops that are owned by white people only, as locals must also benefit,” he said.

Nzimande slated reported fraudulent methods used to appoint local government election candidates in some areas around the Edendale area and dismissed as opportunists people who use the ANC for their personal gain.

“We must guard against some people who fail to get positions within the ANC and then join the SACP or Sanco to get into positions as they are using these alliance organisations to fight their wars.”

Also at the burial, the chairperson of the uMkhonto Wesizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) Themba Mavundla warned criminals that members of the MKMVA are going to intervene in the war against crime.

Mavundla said they are going to meet KZN MEC for Community Safety and Liaison Willies Mchunu to discuss what should be the role of MKMVA members in the fight against crime.

In his address, Mavundla praised Bhengu’s role in the compilation of a database for former MK soldiers and the establishment of a progressive trade union for soldiers — the SA Security Forces Union.

Bhengu, who is from the KwaMachibisa area in Edendale, received a military funeral. He was laid to rest at Ethembeni Cemetery in Lincoln Meade.

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