The South African Communist Party (SACP) in KwaZulu Natal says state security agencies are being used to fight political battles in the province.  It raised the murder charges against Mayors Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba and Mluleki Ndobe.

The party held a media briefing in Durban, where it also weighed in on the Ingonyama Trust.

Last week the Newcastle Magistrate’s court dropped murder charges against the town’s mayor Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba due to sufficient evidence. He was accused of killing Emalahleni African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) leader Wandile Ngobeni in 2016.

Charges against Mluleki Ndobe, accused of having a role in the killing of former ANCYL leader Sindiso Magaqa, were provisionally withdrawn. Ndobe had spent eight days behind bars.

The SACP says the two arrests were orchestrated by their political opponents within the ANC.

The party says it wants the Independent Police Investigations Directorate and Chapter 9 institutions to investigate.

SACP KZN Secretary Themba  Mthembu says, “The SACP believe that some elements within the law enforcement agencies are being used by certain individuals to harass their political opponents. The party has appealed to police Minister Bheki Cele and national commissioner to investigate the allegations.”

On the Ingonyama Trust the SACP wants the constitutional court to rule on the matter.

Over 3 million hectares in KwaZulu Natal fall under the trust, with King Goodwill Zwelithini the sole trustee. There have been several suggestions that the trust be dissolved and those living on the land be given title deeds.

This was rejected by the King and traditional leaders in the province.

“We believe that since South Africa is a constitutional democracy, the debate around the Ingonyama trust should be taken to the constitutional court and to let the highest court in the land decide on the constitutionality of the trust,” says Mthembu.

The party believes only then will people living under the Ingonyama Trust benefit from the land.

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