Former IFP leaders in search of positions have no place in NFP, says ‘VZ’

2011-02-14 00:00

NATIONAL Freedom Party (NFP) leader Zanele “VZ’’ Magwaza-Msibi appealed to former IFP leaders who came to her party in order to fight for positions, to return to the IFP “as there is no place for them in the NFP”.

Magwaza-Msibi was speaking to thousands of supporters during a rally to formally launch her party, at Durban’s Curries Fountain on Saturday.

“I appeal to those who came to the NFP to fight for positions and those who believe in gossiping, to return to their previous parties because there is no place for them in the NFP.

“The party that we come from is now falling to pieces and is on its way to extinction because of gossips and power-mongering … We are not going to allow that to happen to the NFP,’’ Magwaza-Msibi said.

She dismissed speculation that her party will face the same fate as the National Democratic Convention and Cope, who are struggling to survive after their split from main parties due to internal power struggles.

“There were, and still are some among the pundits and sceptics who draw on piles of case studies of post-1994 political parties, in their attempt to make a case about the impossibility of our decision.

“However, rarely do they make sound propositions on how the idiocies of the post-1994 political parties, which resulted in their collapse, could be avoided. We remain unwavering in our belief that our party’s potential and ability cannot be judged by the failure of other parties. In our judgment the probability to fail does not outweigh the real possibility that we will succeed …’’

Magwaza-Msibi said the issue of leadership within the party will only be discussed after the elections and the current steering committee, which is comprised of former IFP leaders from different districts and provinces, will continue to be in charge of the affairs of the party.

The party also introduced its draft policies, which were distributed to members for amendment before final policies are made.

The NFP’s vision statement reads: “Our vision is of a healthy and educated society, that is truly reconciled with its past and free of antagonism, at peace with the present and united in its vision of a shared future, a South Africa based on the values of human rights, independent judiciary, a mixed market driven economy, which accords equal economic opportunity for all, and equal access to these services of the state,’’ reads the NFP’s vision statement.

The party also launched its local government election campaign and its manifesto for the coming elections.

Included in the manifesto are aims to reduce the heavy reliance of municipalities on consultants, the establishment of customer care centres which will serve as first point of contact between municipalities and communities, introduction of measures to ensure that all municipalities have adequate financial systems and ensuring councils have adequate mechanisms to fulfil their oversight duties.

The 15 000 seat Curries Fountain stadium was filled to capacity with thousands of people having to sit on the pitch as there was no space for them in the grandstands.

The stadium was covered in a sea of orange NFP T-shirts, and some supporters had to climb trees for a clear view of the procession.

In contrast, a small number of IFP supporters converged at KwaMashu hostel in what the party described as the takeover of the hostel from Magwaza-Msibi supporters.

Some NFP supporters carried a coffin draped in IFP colours in a mock funeral procession complete with funeral songs.

Magwaza-Msibi revealed the party, less than a month old, has received donations from several business people. Limpopo businesswoman Mulalo Mkhathini donated R1 million to the NFP and presented Magwaza-Msibi with a R1,6 million Nissan Patrol 4x4 double cab.

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