Shelembe, Khubisa to appeal 10-year NFP suspension
THE internal squabbles within the National Freedom Party look far from over as national chairman Maliyakhe Shelembe and secretary-general Nhlanhla Khubisa launch an appeal against their 10-year suspension from the party.
The two were found guilty of failure to pay election registration fees for the local government elections last year, and the NFP was disqualified by the Electoral Commission of SA.
The NFP managed to participate in the elections only in rural Nquthu Municipality, northern KwaZulu-Natal, where certain party members had paid out of their own pockets.
Former treasurer Xolani Ndlovu was initially the only one blamed for the blunder but later Shelembe, Khubisa and deputy chairman Sicelo Mabika, who was suspended for seven months, were also charged. Ndlovu had since resigned. The hearing began in November and finished last month, with Shelembe and Khubisa given lengthy suspensions.
Shelembe said he and Khubisa would challenge the decision. Their appeal would delay the party’s intention to remove them as members of Parliament.
Shelembe said it was wrong for the national disciplinary tribunal to charge him and his two colleagues after Ndlovu had taken full blame for the party’s failure to register on time.
Shelembe said they had handed the timetable to Ndlovu, and it was placed on the wall of his office.
“We were not on a day-to-day running of the administration. We gave Ndlovu information and we told him to adhere to it.
“He is the one who did not do his job, and he admitted to the mistake of confusing the dates,” he said.
Shelembe said their appeal was based on the fact that during the hearings, their legal representative, Boysey Gumede, was no longer available after he was arrested for pointing a firearm at the tribunal’s presiding officer, Thembisa Mafu.
Police spokesman Thulani Zwane confirmed the arrest following the incident during the disciplinary hearings at Pietermaritzburg’s Imperial Hotel on November 23.
“His firearm was also taken away for further investigation. He will appear again on January 23 in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court,” said Zwane.