DA in KZN stages picket ahead of State of the Province Address

2018-02-28 13:00
The DA in KZN has decided to picket before the State of the Province Address. (Mxolisi Mngadi, News24)

The DA in KZN has decided to picket before the State of the Province Address. (Mxolisi Mngadi, News24)

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Pietermaritzburg - The Democratic Alliance in KwaZulu-Natal picketed outside the Royal Showgrounds in Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday, ahead of the State of the Province (SOPA).

DA provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango told News24 that the protest was to highlight the crisis facing KwaZulu-Natal.

"We are hoping that the premier will touch on issues of health, education and unemployment in the province. We hope he will also touch on their position around the issue of Ingonyama Trust," he said.

During the official opening of the provincial legislature on Tuesday, King Goodwill Zwelithini said he has summoned the Ingonyama Trust board to start putting together a team of lawyers and retired judges who would take the issue of land belonging to the trust to the Constitutional Court.

He said he wanted the issue to be dealt with and concluded in 2018.

Legal battles

A report by the panel on the Assessment of Key Legislation and Fundamental Change - which is before Parliament - has recommended that the Ingonyama Trust Act be repealed or amended.

The panel, led by former president Kgalema Motlanthe, also recommended that the trust be dissolved.

The trust administers 2.8 million hectares of land in KwaZulu-Natal on behalf of the king.

King Goodwill said he would soon open a bank account, where each member of the Zulu nation would contribute R5 to be used during legal battles over the land

Mncwango said he hoped that Premier Willies Mchunu would also talk about the drug crisis facing the province and "the decline of our economy".

"We are saying the ANC has changed leadership, but we don't see any change when it comes to implementing policies," he said.

Mncwango said President Cyril Ramaphosa was the same as former president Jacob Zuma.

"We've seen the reshuffle by Ramaphosa, but he retained the dead wood, so basically you can tell that nothing would change. The ANC is still the same ANC as it was under Zuma," he said.

He said the DA believed that KwaZulu-Natal could only change "when" the DA came to power in 2019.

"We believe total change means a new government that would be led by the DA. A DA government that would be caring, that would bring about quality education, healthcare system that is working, and also grow the economy," he said.

Zuma had also arrived at the venue ahead of the State of the Province Address.

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