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Moerane Commission: ANC leaders suppress activists to cover up corruption

Abahlali president Sibusiso Zikode has shared with commissioners how others have been shot by police officers who were acting on instructions from senior politicians.

Abahlali Basemjondolo leader Sibusiso Zikode at the Moerane Commission of Inquiry into political killings in KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Ziyanda Ncgobo/EWN

DURBAN – The Moerane Commission investigating political killings in KwaZulu-Natal has heard how activists are suppressed by African National Congress (ANC) leaders in order for corruption to continue.

Wednesday was the third day of the inquiry, where shack dwellers movement Abahlali Basemjondolo made presentations.

The group, which is outspoken on housing and service delivery issues in KwaZulu-Natal, believes it is being targeted for speaking out on corruption in the eThekwini Municipality.

Abahlali president Sibusiso Zikode has shared with commissioners how others have been shot by police officers who were acting on instructions from senior politicians.

He says they now fear reporting cases to authorities because they also fear investigating their bosses.

Among the solutions that Zikode has provided includes being a part of the development plans of the province, which he says they are currently not a part of.

The movement says that if the ANC is committed to its so-called radical economic transformation it must start with providing better services to citizens living in shacks.

POLICE AFRAID TO INVESTIGATE MURDERS

Meanwhile, the commission also heard how senior police officers in the province are afraid of investigating cases against politicians.

Zikode said some of the movement’s leaders have been told to stop their activism or face continued intimidation.

He says that some police officers even tell them that they are unable to investigate their political masters who pay them.

The movement has called for officers from outside the province to be brought in to investigate cases of corruption and murder.

The probe has seen the Glebelands hostels in Umlazi featuring prominently, where at least 77 people have been killed since March 2014.

Last month, the Public Protector’s office found that the eThekwini Municipality and police failed to prevent and investigate crime in the area.

At the same time, Police Minister Fikile Mbalula has reinforced a task team investigating political violence in the province.

The R15 million commission, led by advocate Marumo Moerane, has been probing politically motivated murders since 2014.

Members of the public have been invited to make submissions with the Glebelands hostels dominating hearings.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Willies Mchunu has vowed to double efforts to bring an effort to the killings, with a focus on the Richmond and uMzimkhulu areas to name a few.

Just last week, three ANC councillors in Umzimkhulu were shot at several times, one of whom was former ANC Youth League secretary-general Sindiso Magaqa.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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