Fresh calls for IFP to transform

THE IFP could soon undergo a serious metamorphosis, including a name change and a revised constitution that allows for the election of a deputy president.

IFP members calling themselves "the concerned group" want the party's name to be changed to the National Freedom Party.

The group - which includes councillors and some members of the party's national leadership - argue that the name "Inkatha" was limiting the party's ability to draw supporters from other ethnic groupings because "it is believed to be a Zulu-nised (sic) word symbolising violence, intimidation and an exclusively Zulu organisation".

The members also want a woman to be elected as president at the party's next elective conference expected to be held sometime next month.

This call is in line with some members of the Inkatha Youth Brigade who have called for the party's chairperson Zanele Magwaza-Msibi to become Buthelezi's successor.

Magwaza-Msibi has indicated that she would support Buthelezi - if he still wanted to remain the party's leader after the forthcoming election.

A member of the group said that having a deputy president would deal with the issue of succession.

The IFP has never had a deputy president, with Inkosi Mangosuthu Buthelezi being the president since its formation.

In terms of the group's proposal, the deputy president would succeed the president.

Yesterday IFP spokesperson Musa Zondi dismissed the group's call, saying the party only dealt with "concerns raised by constitutionally constituted structures of the party".