War clouds gathering

RECENT media reports that former members of the Inkatha Freedom Party self-defence unit are under-going military training in Hluhluwe, northern KwaZulu-Natal, is cause for concern.

RECENT media reports that former members of the Inkatha Freedom Party self-defence unit are under-going military training in Hluhluwe, northern KwaZulu-Natal, is cause for concern.

The training is said to be taking place at the infamous Mlaba camp, used during apartheid by rightwingers such as former IFP executive member Phillip Powell to train self-defence units.

Last Friday the South African Police announced the arrest of about 300 youths who were receiving training at the notorious camp.

The possibility of having these obviously disgruntled youths unleashed on communities by unscrupulous politicians as part of the build-up to next year's election - as it has happened before in KwaZulu-Natal - is too ghastly to contemplate.

Compounding the situation is the tension already brewing between the IFP and ANC in the province.

Two weeks ago the two parties accused each other of running death squads.

Adding fuel to the fire has been the ANC's stance on changing the name of the Mangosuthu Highway in Umlazi to that of slain ANC lawyer Griffith Mxenge.

The move has been seen by the IFP as a way of obliterating IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi's name from the annals of the country's struggle history.

South Africa cannot afford to have another bloody internecine war in KwaZuluNatal such as the one during in the build-up to the 1994 election.

The leaders of both the IFP and ANC must rise to the occasion and ensure that this does not happen.

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