Summit probe ‘sabotage’, says new Zululand mayor

2010-06-18 00:00

THE newly appointed Mayor of the Zululand District Municipality, Blessed Gwala, dismissed as “sabotage attempts” an investigation launched by the Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Department into whether a recent youth summit organised by his municipality was an Inkatha Freedom Party.

It was reported yesterday that about R400 000 was used to accommodate delegates of the two-day-summit, which was addressed by IFP president Mangosuthu Buthelezi, IFP Youth Brigade acting chairperson Pat Lebenya-Ntanzi and Ntuthuko Majozi, the president of the IFP-aligned SA Democratic Students’ Movement. Transport for the delegates from the district’s five municipalities cost an estimated R300 000.

Gwala told The Witness that the summit, held at Vryheid, was organised by his predecessor, Zanele Magwaza-Msibi.

“When I became the Mayor of Zululand, some people threatened that they were going to sabotage my programmes. I believe this [probe] is part of those sabotage attempts.”

Department spokesperson Mthatheni Mabaso said the MEC is concerned about the purported exclusion of other councillors from the summit.

“The department is in possession of the speech allegedly delivered by one of the key speakers at the conference, which … refers to the summit as ‘a significant day in the history of the IFP’,” Mabaso said.

The Witness also has a copy of the speech, by Lebenya-Ntanzi,

Gwala said Lebenya-Ntanzi and Buthelezi were invited in their capacity as prominent district citizens, not because of their positions.

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