November 28, 2005

The IFP will invoke its rights afforded by the South African Constitution, all the relevant legislation, the standing rules of the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Parliament and common sense in order to fight a motion by Cyril Xaba, ANC MPP, and aimed at ousting IFP leader, Dr Lionel Mtshali, from all elective positions in that Parliament.

Xaba’s motion, tabled during a recent sitting in Estcourt, accused Dr Mtshali of vitriolic utterances, unbecoming conduct as a leader, not contributing to peace and stability in the province and bringing Parliament into disrepute. The motion did not specify any of these accusations.

“The language of this motion is libelous and out of order in terms of parliamentary rules. This is unparliamentary behaviour. The IFP will fight the motion in accordance with the rules. We will raise a point of order and we are making this position clear in advance of the sitting,” said Dr Mtshali.

“This is a blatant attempt to silence a political opponent. It moves KwaZulu-Natal and South Africa closer to a one-party state. The IFP, by definition and on principle, will not stand for it. The IFP will not tolerate it,” said Dr Mtshali.

Dr Mtshali criticized the motive behind holding the parliamentary sitting in Estcourt at the time: "The intention is not to "bring Parliament to the people", as those who are trying to sell this glitzy occasion to the public are officially suggesting. Their real aim is to garner votes for the ruling party in the run-up to the local government elections."

"The funds which paid for the decoration of this venue and our glamorous accommodation there could have made a difference to a poverty-stricken community nearby! If only the ruling party was serious about policy and service delivery," said Dr Mtshali at the time.

For further information contact:
Dr Lionel Mtshali: 083 256 4902