Political killings: MEC urges tolerance

2012-08-02 18:34

Johannesburg - Political parties in KwaZulu-Natal must exercise tolerance to stop the spate of political killings, Community Safety MEC Willies Mchunu said on Thursday.

"We call upon political parties to educate their constituencies on political tolerance and democracy," he told the KwaZulu-Natal legislature in Pietermaritzburg.

In a speech prepared for delivery, Mchunu asked Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa to reconsider the formation of a national intervention task team to address these killings.

"We will welcome any kind of intervention that will be considered by the minister of police.

"We do have confidence [in] the police and provincial commissioner in KwaZulu-Natal but... we feel that national will bring more resources and necessary expertise to assist our provincial police."

He said the province had seen an increase in the number of politically-related killings in the second part of 2011 and in 2012.

Police had reported political instability in Margate, Vryheid, Dundee, KwaMashu, Estcourt, Greytown, KwaDukuza, Umlazi T-section, Jacobs and SJ Smith hostels, he said.

"This owes largely to power struggles between different political parties, as well as internal leadership struggles."

Mchunu gave details of 35 possibly politically-related murders in these areas since mid-2011. Seventeen people had been arrested in connection with these killings.

He said the provincial multi-party political oversight committee on interventions - set up prior to the local government elections last year - was developing strategies to address political violence.

"The approach of the multi-party political committee is to alert members of parties of the importance of peaceful negotiations where arguments or disagreements surface, particularly those of a political nature.

"Through this mechanism, the leadership of the parties are able to intervene to stabilise conflict situations," he said.

However, Inkatha Freedom Party provincial legislature leader Blessed Gwala questioned whether this commission was effective.

"Whenever the IFP has brought matters relating to politically-motivated violence to the attention of this House, we were promptly referred to this commission.

"But has this commission done anything to address these issues?"

No solution

One of the reasons for the continuing violence was that the government had no solution to the problem, he said in a speech prepared for delivery.

"It lacks strategy as well as institutional capacity to deal with violence effectively."

He condemned the political killings, but was disappointed that the KwaZulu-Natal government was only acting now that a high-profile ANC member had been killed.

He was referring to the murder of Ugu district municipality ANC chief whip Wandile Mkhize in Port Shepstone on 30 June.

"We are concerned that too many politically-motivated murders that have plagued the province in recent months and years did not warrant this kind of attention, simply because their victims did not hail from the ANC."

Gwala said the political violence in the province during the apartheid years had created a "fractured and intolerant society".

"Delayed reconciliation between the ANC and the IFP has denied closure to thousands of families in the province."

This manifested in ongoing low-level political intimidation in KwaZulu-Natal between elections, with an upsurge in the build-up to them, he said.

The IFP supported the idea of a peace summit for all political parties in the province.

"The IFP strongly believes that the inter-party conflicts that still exist today must be solved now, before they develop into something larger and more sinister," Gwala said.

  • michael.bushes - 2012-08-02 18:47

    Whatever. Its quite obvious to me that Black South Africans are their own biggest enemy

      christopher.columbus.3950178 - 2012-08-03 10:47

      Hi Killers...I can give you a few more addresses for you to go to. The presidents building for one.

  • kevin.watson.7906 - 2012-08-02 18:55

    Tolerance is what you tell your children when they complain about the neighbours children making fun of them. This is the crime of murder brought about by the massively corrupt municipal and provincial administrations in KwaZulu-Natal. The perpetrators of the corruption and the murderers must be found, prosecuted and incarcerated. Their political masters must be fired.

      michael.bushes - 2012-08-02 18:58

      "Their political masters must be fired." And be replaced with yet another rotten person from a political master's inner circle? The only way forward is for the Black South African to pull their fingers out their a--es and start behaving like responsible citizens by voting this cANCer out of business for good

  • Henk - 2012-08-02 18:56

    If you want to behave like the mafia...well

      michael.bushes - 2012-08-02 19:02

      Well what can you say? If you vote for people with empty metal cans, you wake up in a shack

  • johnathon.masters - 2012-08-02 19:08

    One less politician can only be a blessing to the nation.

      devon.riley.52 - 2012-08-02 19:37

      Especially these savages. They wanna kill each other let them, fewer people looting the fiscus

  • kevin.pitzer - 2012-08-02 19:26

    I once read that within regional politics that politicians are generaly not categorised as good people or bad people. What you seem to get is winners and losers.Winners are respected as they have the position to ensure onward comforts and therefore many aspire to be a winner.In my opinion political murders are either perpertarted by losers wanting to become winners or by winners killing off the few good(People who may whistleblow) so that they may continue winning.Reading today about so many unaccounted billions of Rands tells me that the current situation if unravelled and recorded would make the Mafioso Al Capone and Don Corleone appear as apprentices.This article above urges tolerance however if my post is to be anywhere near the truth then if a person is so confident to arrange murder in order to protect or further their name then my question is who of these people would respect such a request.If such questions are being asked by people then one would assume that we are headed south at an angle of between 65 and 90 degrees at a rate so fast that we should all sit up and think and conrtibute to change the tradjectory and try and be one example of an African country that works.If not it is clear where this is headed.....

  • sandy.langenstrass - 2012-08-02 19:36

    Let's remind these's no longer 1800's when you killed for power...this is now a democratic country....even if your neighbour prefers to vote for another must except that, because he has that right to his opinions....the best way to avoid trouble....DON'T TALK POLITICS IF YOU FEEL THE OTHER PERSON THINKS DIFFERENT TO YOU.

  • gerasimos.komnenus - 2012-08-03 05:46

    So boringly tribal.... but I suppose what else do you expect from iron age peasants?

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