ANC and lobby group clash over shootings

THE ANC in uMlazi in KwaZulu-Natal is attempting to mend the rifts with community members of Zakheleni township while three of their residents lie in hospitals after being shot - with fingers being pointed at the councillor.

A meeting in ward 88 between the ANC and residents represented by a lobby group for the poor, Abahlali BaseMjondolo, proved to be futile last Thursday when the latter walked out claiming they felt "undermined" by ANC officials - among them secretary Sakhile Ngcobo.

Regional leader Ntombi Ndlela was also one of those who attended the meeting.

The walkout was prompted by the fact that ANC branch and regional leaders deployed at the meeting had failed to secure the presence of KwaZulu-Natal MEC for safety and security Willies Mchunu and eThekwini municipality chairman of the human settlements committee Nigel Gumede, as it had been demanded.

The lobby group's spokeswoman, Bandile Mdlalose, said the meeting was expected to discuss the recent police brutality and shootings in the area, which had been marred by service delivery protests.

Residents were calling for ANC councillor Nomzamo Mkhize to be fired, claiming she didn't care about concerns raised by the people and had failed to hold meetings for several months.

They also accused her of having something to do with the recent shooting of Noxolo Mkanyi, who was a tenant in the home of her rival Bongani Zungu's home.

It is alleged Mkhize had phoned Zungu to tell him people were looking for him hours before gunmen came into his home demanding to see him. When they could not find him, they went to an outside room and shot Mkanyi.

"It has since become clear that the attack in the Zakhele settlement was led by ANC supporters acting with the support of the police," said Mdlalose.

He also referred to other shootings during protests in which two other people were shot, allegedly by the police.

But Ngcobo told Sowetan the allegations were baseless and that he had consistently told residents to bring evidence so that police could investigate the matter.


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