Zulu monarch reminds politicians to serve the citizens

2009-02-18 00:00

King Goodwill Zwelithini yesterday reminded politicians that people rely on them to make decisions that will change people's lives for the better.

The Zulu monarch was speaking during the official opening of the provincial legislature. The opening ceremony, held at the Royal Showgrounds, was attended by members of the royal family, provincial MECs, MPLs, ANC president Jacob Zuma, SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande and former premier Frank Mdlalose. As usual, guests were dressed to impress.

Zwelithini encouraged politicians to work together to fight jealousy, dishonesty and greed among themselves and to develop "hatred" for vanity and hate speech.

The king commended Zuma and Mdlalose, the first KZN premier after the 1994 elections, for working together in quelling political violence in the 1990s, during which time the ANC president was MEC for Economic Affairs and Tourism. He said political violence should not prevail again.

Zwelithini said the legislature is an institution that the public believes is filled by individuals with the skills and the know-how to address challenges facing the province.

The king said that government is tasked with protecting citizens' lives; ensuring that perpetrators of crimes are prosecuted and punished; uplifting the people and finding solutions to rescue those living in poverty.

He said the public also relies on government to craft policies that will alleviate xenophobic feelings. He said the country does not want to deal with the "ugly faces of xenophobia again".

Zwelithini said those attending the opening of the legislature did so because it gave them the hope that they were among the people who could address the challenges they are faced with.

"To you honourable members and all your support staff, we assume that you will continue to liberate us from the persistent poverty and gnawing state of unemployment. We rely on you to convince members of society that the government does not practise nepotism and cronyism," said the monarch.

He urged parliamentarians to intercede on behalf of the public when food prices escalate while fuel prices go down.

He said government has to play its role and ensure safety and good education for children. He said this would be possible by letting administrators in education carry out their duties without the interference of trade unions and politicians.

The monarch commended the provincial government's response to the recent natural disasters that affected parts of the province.

thandom@witness.co.za

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