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IFP drops legal bid to oust ANC's corruption tainted Gumede from KZN legislature

The party filed papers with Pietermaritzburg High Court in November, arguing that Gumede’s appointment was irrational given the multi-million rand corruption case she’s facing.

FILE: Zandile Gumede (left) is sworn in as a member of the KwaZulu-Natal legislature on 19 August 2020. KZN Legislature Speaker Nontembeko Boyce looks on. Picture: Supplied

DURBAN - The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) has abandoned its court bid to oust former eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede from the KwaZulu-Natal legislature.

The party filed papers with the Pietermaritzburg High Court in November, arguing that Gumede’s appointment was irrational given the multi-million rand corruption case she’s facing.

The matter was expected to be heard on Thursday.

In its legal challenge, the IFP had accused the African National Congress (ANC) of wasting taxpayers’ money after it placed Gumede on extended paid leave while her fate was being decided.

IFP president Velenkosini Hlabisa said that they had now abandoned their court action because the former mayor had resumed her duties as a member of the provincial legislature and therefore taxpayers’ money was no longer being wasted.

"Our concern was attended to. We said that taxpayers' money cannot be earned by someone who is not doing anything for the legislature."

But ANC KZN spokesperson Nhlakanipho Ntombela has accused the IFP of misleading the public.

He said that the province’s official opposition knew very well that it was going to lose the case anyway.

"The IFP had a political issue but no legal case."

Ntombela maintained that Gumede would remain a public representative for the ANC, saying that she was innocent until proven guilty.

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