ANC: ‘We’ll be back’

2011-04-19 00:00

DESPITE having been turned away by armed Inkatha Freedom Party supporters and police on Sunday, the ÁNC Youth League (ANCYL) is planning to return to campaign in the vicinity of IFP president Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s KwaPhindangene homestead next Saturday.

Addressing a press conference in Durban yesterday, ANCYL KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary Bheki Mtolo said that on the next planned visit his members want to ensure ANCYL president Julius Malema is present, as was intended for Sunday’s aborted visit.

An ANCYL motorcade of about 200 cars was stopped on Sunday at the junction leading to Nkonjeni, where Buthelezi’s KwaPhindangene homestead is situated.

“We are not going to retreat,we will go back to Nkonjeni and this time we will be prepared in such a way that we will organise tow trucks to remove the IFP vehicles they used to block us from entering …” Mtolo said.

He said the campaign is not targeting Buthelezi’s house but his neighbourhood “as all political parties have a right to campaign everywhere”.

The ANC said it has lodged a complaint with the Independent Electoral Commission over the issue.

The IFP Youth Brigade’s national chairperson, Mkhuleko Hlengwa, said the record has to be set straight regarding the incident.

He said that stopping the ANCYL from invading KwaPhindangene was “a victory for democracy and freedom. It was a victory for political tolerance”.

“The ANC Youth League in KwaZulu-Natal issued a statement last week to say they would invade KwaPhindangene, the private residence of Prince Buthelezi.

“The ANC was not stopped from campaigning in greater Ulundi. We did, however, prevent them from invading his home.

“… We will never take any threat against our president lying down.”

Hlengwa said the youth brigade maintains political parties are at liberty to campaign where they wish, and people are free to join and choose a political party of their own liking.

“But we remain convinced that invading peoples’ private residences is a direct contravention of their most basic human rights and such a situation cannot be allowed.”

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