‘VZ’ defiant despite threats

2011-02-17 00:00

THE leader of the newly-formed National Freedom Party, Zanele “VZ” Magwaza-Msibi, has vowed to continue to campaign for her party, despite receiving death threats.

She said she has also been warned by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) that there are plots to have her killed.

Speaking to The Witness yesterday, Magwaza-Msibi confirmed that she has received countless death threats over the phone and that would-be assassins have approached her and informed her that they have been paid to kill her.

“I have even received tips from the NIA sources telling me that there is a plot to have me killed.

“Some people telephoned me and said they had been paid to ensure that I am killed before the local government elections. However, that will not deter me from campaigning for the NFP as the local government campaign intensifies.

“I will continue to campaign and I will never be intimidated by the enemies of democracy,” Magwaza-Msibi said defiantly.

Provincial South African Police Force spokesperson Brigadier Phindile Radebe confirmed that Magwaza-Msibi has reported assassination threats to the police and that as a result, arrangements have been made to reinforce her security 24 hours a day.

“We also ensure that we deploy a sizeable number of police when she is going to different areas because of those threats. I confirm that these threats started escalating as from last month [January]” Radebe sad.

Revelations about a plot to kill Magwaza-Msibi come in the wake of continued utterances by Inkatha Freedom Party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi that the ANC is behind the launch of the NFP, and that the ANC is plotting to oust him as the leader of the IFP.

Buthelezi warned that the continued interference by the ANC in IFP affairs might lead to the resurgence of IFP-on-ANC violence.

A senior NFP leader who asked not to be named alleged that persons suspected to be behind the plot to assassinate Magwaza-Msibi are former members of the IFP/KwaZulu-Natal government’s self-protection unit (SPUs).

This is a paramilitary group that was trained at Mlaba Camp in the 1990s when the IFP-ANC conflict was at its height in the province.

“One is a soldier based in the Eastern Cape and he came to the NFP launch at Curries Fountain on Saturday.

“We had to ask police to take him out of the stadium after he was found with a fake VIP accreditation card at the rally,” the leader said.

Durban-based SPU commander Mandla Zwane confirmed that they were aware of a plot to use SPU members to kill Magwaza-Msibi.

At the Saturday launch of the NFP, SPU commander Bheki Dlamini announced that the paramilitary group would align itself with the NFP.

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