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Deliver the land and we’ll vote ANC, says shack dwellers

Daily News logo Daily News 2018-10-21 LUNGANI ZUNGU
a group of people in front of a crowd: Abahlali Base Mjondolo shack dwellers movement. © Provided by Independent Media Abahlali Base Mjondolo shack dwellers movement.

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Durban - Shack dweller movement Abahlali baseMjondolo will throw its weight behind the ANC if land redistribution is fast-tracked.

Sbu Zikode, the leader of the movement, said it would be “stupid” to fall for any promises made by the ruling party ahead of the next year’s general elections, without them first delivering on their promise.

“We actually want people to deliver first. We have been fooled for the past 24 years by the ANC-led government, we cannot allow that to happen anymore,” said Zikode.

He said it has not yet taken any decision on which party to support in next year’s elections.

When it was formed in 2005, Abahlali baseMjondolo was non-­partisan and not aligned to any political party.

However, in the 2014 general elections, it endorsed the DA.

Zikode, who has been in hiding since July after alleged death threats, said the ANC’s silence on its repression in eThekwini was deafening.

“Our members are killed, but the ANC is silent. No one can justify their silence. All we want is land and proper housing,” said Zikode.

The ANC adopted the policy to expropriate land without compensation at its December conference.

Abahlali baseMjondolo was expected to hold its congress in December. This is after it dissolved its structures amid claims that ANC members had infiltrated the movement with the aim of destroying it.

Mqapheli Bonono, a member of the interim structure, said the ANC government has been ruthless towards it. “The expropriation of land without compensation is just rhetoric. They are not going to deliver land to people. We want the land back now.”

He said many ANC leaders have been hell-bent on suppressing the movement: “If they are serious about getting votes, they must deliver and stop making empty promises. People are fed up with them.”

Bonono said leaders of the movement have been “walking in the shadow of death”.

“We want to stay clear from politics at this stage because people are coming with promises and not service delivery.

Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu, ANC provincial spokesperson, said her party was unaware about the claims made by Abahlali baseMjondolo.

“They should come to us with these complaints, and we will look into them as the organisation,” she said.

Simelane-Zulu said the ANC was taking its policy of expropriation of land without compensation seriously.

Sunday Tribune

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