Speech blamed for murder

2011-02-18 00:00

THE National Freedom Party leader in the uThukela district and former Inkatha Freedom Party mayour of uMtshezi (Estcourt), Maliyakhe Lymon Shelembe, is blaming IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s speech in Parliament this week for the death of a NFP councillor in Mbabazane.

Councillor Mcebisi Patrick Duma of iMbabazane Municipality near Estcourt was gunned down near Wembezi township on Wednesday night.

He had been introduced as one of the councillors who defected to the NFP from the IFP in Mbabazane during a visit by NFP leader Zanele Magwaza-Msibi in the uThukela area last week.

KZN police spokesperson Brigadier Phindile Radebe confirmed the incident and said Duma’s vehicle came under attack and he sustained gunshot wounds to the upper body and died on the scene.

“Police recovered one spent 9 mm cartridge and two spent R5 cartridges on the scene as well as a Toyota Corolla used by the suspects. The deceased was in possession of his personal 9 mm pistol and it is suspected that he may have fired at his attackers to defend himself.”

Members of the political violence task team are investigating the murder.

Speaking to The Witness during a visit by NFP leaders visit to the Duma family in Zwelisha, Estcourt, yesterday, a tearful Shelembe said Buthelezi’s “irresponsible speech” in Parliament in which he associated the NFP with the ANC, and his threats that there would be bloodshed and political instability, are to blame for Duma’s killing.

In his response to President Jacob Zuma’s state of the nation address on Tuesday, Buthelezi blamed the ANC for fanning tensions and reiterated his accusation that the ruling party is behind the establishment of the NFP.

Buthelezi said “tensions between the ANC and IFP contain the nascent threat of taking us back to a time of violence and bloodshed”.

Shelembe said Buthelezi’s speech had the potential to be interpreted as a call for war between the IFP on one side and the ANC and the NFP on the other.

“The killing of our councillor just a day after such a volatile speech means that our leaders must learn to watch their tongues when speaking to the public … We reject Buthelezi’s speech about the possibility of returning to the bloodshed era … This smacks of irresponsible leadership and encourages grassroots people to embark on violence on pretences that their well-being is under threat …”

However, Shelembe appealed to NFP supporters and the Duma family to refrain from taking the law into their own hands and asked police to speed up their investigation of the case.

Although Duma had publicly crossed to the NFP, IFP national organiser Albert Mncwango described his killing as “a systematic campaign to kill IFP councillors in KwaZulu-Natal”.

When The Witness visited the Duma homestead yesterday, family spokesperson Bonginkosi Ntshaba described him as a peace-loving person dedicated to his family and the community.

Ntshaba said that before the attack, Duma had complained about a car that was constantly following him.

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.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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.


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.