Buthelezi predicts one-party state in SA

Floor-crossing, dubbed “crosstitution”, will lead to the rapid consolidation of a one-party state in South Africa, Inkatha Freedom Party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi told the party’s 30th annual conference on Saturday.

“South Africa must decide whether to accept the results of the floor-crossing legislation and rapid consolidation of a one-party state or whether it would rather choose democracy,” he said.

“Democracy is about caring. Our democracy is crumbling because those in power do not care.”

He said the upcoming local government election “is the time in which we must save our dying democracy and rescue our betrayed liberation”.

The IFP suffered a blow recently when former national chairperson Ziba Jiyane defected to form the centre-right National Democratic Convention.

Jiyane has scored a KwaZulu-Natal MPL seat from the African Christian Democratic Party during the current 15-day floor-crossing period.

Buthelezi stressed that he will be around “for as long as the people of Inkatha wish me to”.

“I am the leader of Inkatha because Inkatha is a party of leaders. You are the leaders,” he said.

“If anyone wonders where the future leadership of Inkatha is, they should just look around at the thousands of leaders assembled in this hall.”

Buthelezi further stressed that he and the IFP have withstood the loneliness of having opinions that were often unpopular, but proved by history to be correct.

“We refused to jump on the bandwagon which throughout the world was advocating international sanctions and a campaign against [apartheid] South Africa.

“We knew them to be wrong, ineffective and detrimental to the poorest of the poor while being immaterial to the affluent segment of our then ruling class.”

Buthelezi said sanctions did not have such a significant bearing on the demise of apartheid.

Instead, they were a severe blow to the economy “which still carries into these days a devastating legacy of unemployment and underdevelopment”.

“The foreign investment and related jobs the ANC [African National Congress] eagerly chased away 20 years ago have not yet come back and because of it today, more people are unemployed.”

Buthelezi said the ANC still does not listen and South Africans suffer as a result.

“This happens even when the ANC realises we are right, but because of its lack of real leadership, it is stopped in its tracks by its alliance partners, the Congress of South African Trade Union and the South African Communist Party.”

Buthelezi said the great divide in South Africa today is between people on the one hand and rulers and governors on the other.

They have betrayed the people by placing their own interests above those of liberation.

“The disintegration of the state spells out the failure of our liberation cause,” he said.—Sapa

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