Makhosi Khoza fears for her kids' safety

2017-05-21 05:50
Dr  Makhosi Khoza (Jan Gerber, Netwerk24)

Dr Makhosi Khoza (Jan Gerber, Netwerk24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

While senior parliamentarian Makhosi Khoza was able to address a Durban book launch on Thursday despite threats from the ANC Youth League (ANCYL), the outspoken ANC MP was unable to go home to visit her children because of fears that she would be attacked.

Khoza’s Hillcrest address was distributed on social media this week by the ANCYL’s eThekwini region. The league had called on its members to picket the house where the Parliament-based single mother’s children live. Khoza told City Press on Friday she had been advised to stay away “because harm was in my way if I were to do so”.

Khoza believes that the league’s threats and vitriol against her have resulted in a state of “rage” against her, which, given the volatile nature of KwaZulu-Natal politics, could turn deadly.

Khoza came under attack from the ANCYL over her stance on the proposed vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma in Parliament and her comments on social media.

They had called for the picketing of her house and disruption of the launch of the book, Making Africa Work, hosted by the Durban-based Xubera Institute for Research and Development, at which Khoza had been scheduled to speak.

The ANCYL had earlier called on the governing party’s national leadership to recall Khoza, who had publicly stated her preference for a secret ballot to allow ANC MPs to “follow their conscience” in voting during a proposed motion of no confidence in Zuma.

The threat and call for pickets were withdrawn after KwaZulu-Natal ANC chairperson Sihle Zikalala intervened and called the ANCYL region – whose members were allegedly involved in assaulting a DA member after a protest march in Durban calling for Zuma to stand down – to order.

The book event went ahead, but only after a lengthy delay and a shift of venue to ensure the safety of not only Khoza, but also that of guest speaker Olusegun Obasanjo, the former Nigerian head of state.

Several police vehicles were parked outside the beachfront Maharani Hotel, where the launch took place, and two members of the police’s tactical response team were visible at its entrance throughout the evening.

"A difficult time"

Khoza told City Press of the pressure of being targeted by members of her own organisation, particularly in KwaZulu-Natal, where she was born and raised.

“It’s been a difficult time, especially because you are under pressure from different angles. One understands this, especially in an environment where there is so much dependence on patronage and where people are thinking about their own survival,” said Khoza.

“What has happened is unprecedented, with even my home address being distributed on social media. [While] they withdrew the statement, the rage against me has remained.

“It wasn’t nice to come down to Durban and not be able to go back home. Although they withdrew the threat and didn’t picket, I had grounds to believe that harm was in my way if I had gone home,” she said.

“Having grown up in an environment in KwaZulu-Natal where one lost friends and comrades and family members to political violence ... this sort of threat is real and serious,” Khoza said.

Khoza said while she had concerns for her own safety and had received a series of death threats, she feared for her children more as she lived in Cape Town, where she sits on the National Assembly’s standing committee on finance, and not in the Durban house whose address had been circulated.

“I have my own concerns, but I fear for the safety of my children. I am a single mother and they mean everything to me,” she said.

Khoza, who holds a PhD in administration and a master’s degree in social science, said she would continue with her course of action as she “owed this country something”.

“I cannot be silent when I am beginning to see the symptoms of a society on a downward spiral. I have that responsibility, not just to my political party, but to society as a whole,” she said.

“I honestly cannot comprehend how one divorces moral conscience from one’s political choices and decisions,” she added.

“If the ANC is going to dissociate itself from moral conscience, then we are saying that we are consenting to immoral or amoral activities. That is something that does not sit well with me.”

Khoza, who has served as a public representative for more than 20 years in various capacities, first started receiving death threats after her televised grilling of former communications minister Faith Muthambi during Parliament’s SABC inquiry earlier this year.

The SA Police Service did not respond to enquiries about Khoza’s security concerns and what steps were being taken to safeguard her.

Read more on:    anc  |  makhosi khoza

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.

/News
 

How to get rid of fleas

Before you call in the pricey exterminators, try this DIY approach that promises to get your flea problem under control.

 
 

Paws

12 Cool cat facts
Chocolate can be fatal for dogs
Spider-man star's adorable relationship with his dog
Do you know what you are feeding your dog?
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.