KwaZulu-Natal - Bus-loads of ANC supporters were expected at the Ramsgate Regional Court in Port Shepstone for the sentencing of an ANC Youth League chairman, who pleaded guilty to the murders of two party leaders on Wednesday.
Sifiso Khumalo, 31, of Port Shepstone admitted guilt in the murders of former ANC branch secretary Bheki Chiliza and local chairman Dumisani Malunga. His co-accused, Samuel Cele, 34, who pleaded not guilty, will appear in court again on September 19.
Khumalo and Cele were arrested on Monday. Chiliza and Malunga were killed on Sunday evening after returning from a party meeting.
The KZN government revealed recently that 32 politically motivated murders had been reported in the province in the past four years.
Last month Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa announced the formation of a high-level task team to investigate these killings. National police spokesman, Colonel Vish Naidoo, said the task team had made significant developments in recent weeks and several arrests had been made.
Youth league provincial convener, Vukani Ndlovu, said it appeared that the run-up to the by-elections in Port Shepstone had been the motivation behind the two assassinations
The ANC and youth league in KwaZulu-Natal applauded the swift work of the police in arresting and extracting a guilty plea out of Khumalo, and the participation of the oShabeni community in providing information to the police.
Ndlovu said “the ANC was not a party of killers” and Khumalo must be used as an example for such killings not to be repeated.
“As the youth league, we have to sit and reflect as a structure, we need our members to understand that even if there are differences we cannot be killing each other. We condemn these killings… we disregard anyone who kills a leader,” he said.
ANC provincial secretary Sihle Zikalala called for a harsh sentence against Khumalo.
“We treat this matter seriously and call on the ANC to look deep within itself. We do not want membership that is rotten, we want people in good standing who are loyal to the ANC and who are not members for their own agendas,” he said. Daily News