IFP axes uMtshezi mayor

2010-10-27 00:00

THE Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) has expelled one of its prominent members and known supporter of Zanele kaMagwaza-Msibi as mayor of the troubled uMtshezi Municipality in the midlands.

Maliyakhe Shelembe was fired with immediate effect on Monday.

IFP national secretary Musa Zondi said Shelembe had defied the party’s national executive committee’s instruction that he should resign.

The IFP issued a statement yesterday evening saying that Shelembe was fired with uMlalazi councillor B.R.L. Ngema.

Zondi said Ngema collected money from poor people with a promise of providing them with houses.

“As we approach the 2011 elections, the IFP identified a number of municipalities in which it needed to make leadership changes in order to optimise leadership capacity, and in that regard, these councillors needed to be relieved of the positions they held,” said the statement.

The statement said eDumbe Mayor Mpiyakhe Hlatshwayo resigned when he was asked to do so, and he remains an ordinary councillor.

Elaborating on the decision, Zondi said: “Both of them [Shelembe and Ngema] have been expelled with immediate effect. As from yesterday, there are no longer in their positions.”

Zondi said Shelembe has been running his municipality down the drain.

“If you go to the local government website you will see the state of that municipality.

“The person who takes responsibility is the political head, who is the main representative of the political party.

“The steps had to be taken if there are problems in that municipality,” said Zondi.

He said that during Shelembe’s tenure uMtshezi Municipality suffered bad publicity as local community members were constantly marching to complain about service delivery.

“You also remember that there were shootings in that municipality among IFP members.

“For more than four or even six months we have been asking him to resign and he defied the order.

“He was given a chance to explain himself, and he could not justify what is happening in uMtshezi,” said Zondi.

Shelembe said he was not aware of the decision to fire him from his position.

“I developed bad blood among undemocratic leaders within the party when they realised that the majority of IFP members in uThukela District want me for their leader,” he said.

He also called on Zondi to resign from the party.

“If a person should resign because certain people have marched against him, Zondi should be the first one to resign because there have too many marches against him,” said Shelembe.

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