Fears of violence at NFP party

FEARS of violence are mounting as the National Freedom Party plans to celebrate its second anniversary in KwaMashu, north of Durban.

The NFP gathering is planned for Sunday at Princess Magogo Stadium. The party said it would hold its celebrations in the township despite previous confrontations between its members and those of the Inkatha Freedom Party.

In November, police were unable to contain clashes between NFP and IFP supporters in KwaMashu's A-section. NFP leader Zanele Magwaza-Msibi was prevented from entering the area and a journalist's car was set alight.

In October, IFP supporter Cebisile Shezi, 31, was shot dead near Thembalihle train station in KwaMashu. Shezi was shot after Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa addressed IFP members, urging them to remain calm after the party's councillor had been kidnapped.

Magwaza-Msibi said that during her party's celebrations they would use alternative routes that do not go past or near KwaMashu Hostel.

"We are afraid and concerned of what might happen. Already we hear that the IFP is planning a meeting on the same day. Police must ensure the safety of our members," she said.

But IFP caucus chairman, Mdu Nkosi, denied that they would be holding a meeting on Sunday.

"The only meeting planned is for Wednesday when our leaders will report about the death of our block chairman, who will be buried on Saturday. Other than that, the NFP is lying. They want excuses should their celebrations be unsuccessful," Nkosi said.

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