ifp protest over book

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

The Inkatha Freedom Party will hold two protest marches today to demand the discontinuation of a history book which is used by grade 12 pupils for reference.

The protestors are unhappy that the book depicts IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi as a warlord.

The party says the book, titled In search of History, which contains a cartoon showing Buthelezi signing a document in red ink, suggests that he signed with the blood of the people to take part in the 1994 polls.

IFP national organiser Albert Mncwango said they were concerned about the message and would challenge the use of the book.

He said IFP members would march in Empangeni and Port Shepstone today and would hand over memoranda to representatives of the national Department of Education and Education Minister Naledi Pandor.

"We cannot allow our children to be poisoned with this tissue of abominable propaganda and the deliberate twisting of history to distort who did what, when and where," Mncwango said.

"Schools should be places of learning and not propaganda incubators where pupils are brainwashed."

He said the IFP would not stand idly by while its contribution to the struggle for freedom was being trampled on and destroyed.

"We will not allow the legacy of Prince Buthelezi to be destroyed," he said.

"We are going to ensure that this book is removed from schools and will use all legal forms of protest to ensure that this happens."

Department spokesman Lunga Nqengelele confirmed that Pandor had met with Buthelezi over the book issue last year.

"It is not a prescribed book but additional material that can be used by pupils as a reference," he said.