Mchunu to face violence inquiry
FORMER KwaZulu-Natal premier and ANC provincial chairman Senzo Mchunu will testify next week before the Moerane Commission investigating political killings in the province.
Commission spokesperson Solo Mdledle confirmed that Mchunu would be testifying next Wednesday.
Mchunu will appear at a time of heightened political tension within his party after the Pietermaritzburg High Court ruled on Tuesday that the ANC’s 2015 provincial conference results were null and void.
Mchunu was the party’s provincial chairman before the conference but was ousted by current chairman Sihle Zikalala.
A clutch of known Mchunubacking ANC members took their grievances to court after claiming that internal party processes had failed.
The verdict effectively nullifies the power of the top tier leadership in the province, although the party has said it will appeal.
The appeals process has caused controversy. Representatives from the provincial women’s, youth and veterans’ leagues said on Wednesday that asking for “permission” from the national ANC leadership to appeal was more of a courtesy than a necessity.
The Moerane Commission was established by current premier Willies Mchunu (no relation to Senzo) to investigate dozens of political killings in the province, the most recent being that of Sindiso Magaqa, a former ANC Youth League secretary-general.
Magaqa was shot in July but only died this month while in hospital. Police are looking into the possibility that he was poisoned.
Magaqa’s funeral takes place in uMzimkhulu on Saturday.
Mdledle said via a series of WhatsApp messages that other witnesses for the week ahead include IFP MPL Blessed Gwala, who would appear on Tuesday, and representatives from the SACP, who would testify on Thursday.
Gwala is also his party’s spokesperson on community safety and liaison. KwaZulu-Natal has been a hotbed of political violence for decades, initially between IFP and ANC supporters.
But in recent years it has manifested in intra-party violence as ANC members scramble for high-paying councillor positions or seek to settle vendettas, according to testimony already heard at the Moerane Commission. – ANA