ANC 'shocked' by IFP arrests
The African National Congress (ANC) in KwaZulu-Natal was “shocked” to learn that another Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) councillor in Nongoma had been arrested in connection with the murder of an ANC member in the area.
“The IFP councillor Hezekiah ‘Fish’ Ngwenya appeared in court today and was refused bail. He is charged for killing our member Thulani [Khumalo],” said ANC spokesperson Senzo Mchunu in a statement on Friday.
Khumalo (44) was shot and killed in March in Nongoma.
Mchunu said no less than five IFP members had been arrested in the past few weeks for allegedly being involved in attacking ANC members.
“The number of senior IFP members who have been arrested for political intimidation, murder and attempted murder against ANC members is, it would seem, rising alarmingly by the day. This begs a question as to whether the IFP is not engaged in a low-intensity attack on ANC members,” said Mchunu.
He said the ANC was amazed at the number of IFP members arrested, adding that IFP leaders denied that the party was not using violence as a tool to exert its political influence.
“This arrest confirms the ANC’s worst fears that the IFP is either in the hands of thuggish elements or the party’s leadership has totally lost control of the party,” said Mchunu.
Mchunu said allegations were rife that IFP caucus funds had been used to pay bail a number of times.
IFP national organiser Albert Mncwango said there was nothing wrong in paying bail for IFP members.
“How much has the ANC paid for Jacob Zuma’s legal battle? We see nothing wrong in paying bail for our members.”
Mncwango said IFP members were being victimised by the police, adding that all of them would walk free because they had done nothing wrong.—Sapa