The Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans’ Association (MKMVA) announced on Monday that it would be “activating” its members in a bid to stop a spate of political killings that have seen more than 10 party members killed in KwaZulu-Natal in the run-up to the local government elections.
Themba Mavundla, the MKMVA leader in KwaZulu-Natal, at a press conference in Durban described the killings that had taken place and prompted the ANC to call for a provincial commission of inquiry as an “incipient low-intensity undeclared civil war that is imposed on us by these faceless dark forces”.
Mavundla said the activation of MKMVA members was not a case of the association taking up arms, but was meant to be an intelligence-driven action that would aim to prevent future killings and provide information to the police in a bid to solve the past killings.
“Those of us who have an intelligence background have been activated to be on alert and to provide early warning of impending attacks so that they can share this with police and the targeted candidates.”
He said that the organisation could not immediately say where the violence was coming from and who was behind the killing of the party’s nominated candidates.
The nomination of ANC candidates in the province has been highly controversial, with numerous protests in various communities in the province claiming that candidates had been imposed on them.
The party’s alliance partner, the SA Communist Party, temporarily withdrew its support for the candidate nomination process earlier in the year, after also claiming that the nomination process had been flawed.
Mavundla said the activation of the MKMVA was an attempt to ensure peace and he was concerned that the violence would continue after the elections on August 3.
“The threat [in KwaZulu-Natal] is big. We are talking 10 or more people who have died. In other provinces you don’t even hear of one person being killed. We think it won’t end. It will escalate after the elections,” he said.
Mavundla said that while MKMVA was focused on the ANC, he noted that members of other parties had been killed.
Apart from the ANC, the National Freedom Party and the Inkatha Freedom Party had also seen members gunned down, with the most recent killing being in Umtshezi (Estcourt) municipality where two IFP members were killed on Friday as they were campaigning.
– African News Agency (ANA)