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Mangosuthu Buthelezi

War of words after walkout at Buthelezi ‘history lecture’

Mangosuthu Buthelezi 51%

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AN AFRICAN National Congress (ANC) Youth League meeting with Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi has triggered a war of words between the league and the IFP youth.


According to Mr Buthelezi, the youth league walked out of Monday’s meeting while he was making his presentation.


He was livid that the league refused to hold a press briefing alongside him.


The IFP Youth Brigade expressed disgust with the youth league, saying their behaviour was "un-African". Mr Buthelezi and the KwaZulu-Natal youth league leadership held separate media briefings afterwards.


The meeting was an attempt to promote peace between the IFP and the ANC. However, the youth league emerged from the meeting saying it was a fruitless exercise.


The acrimonious relationship between the two parties could create tension in some parts of KwaZulu-Natal. Violence between the two parties in the 1980s and 1990s resulted in the deaths of more than 20000 people.


The youth league angered Mr Buthelezi when it suggested he step down as leader of the IFP. Mr Buthelezi is under siege from supporters of party chairwoman Zanele Magwaza-Msibi who want her to succeed him as president.


In a letter to the KwaZulu- Natal youth league, IFP Youth Brigade secretary Bheki Mngwengwe said: "It is an understatement to say that we are disgusted with your behaviour. It was totally un-African and is the antithesis of all that is decent."


ANC Youth League provincial secretary Bheki Mtolo yesterday said had they not left, Mr Buthelezi’s "history lecture" could have lasted until the following day. "What he did was he presented long documents from 1962. He told us things that were said by people who had since died. He is a very angry and frustrated man."


Both youth groups agreed to meet next year to iron out their differences before the local government elections. "We have no reason not to meet the youth brigade. It is in our interest to try and build peace in the province to make sure no lives are lost next year," Mr Mtolo said.





Source: www.businessday.co.za


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