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Glebelands residents to testify at political killings inquiry

Speaking to African News Agency (ANA) on Thursday, advocate Marumo Moerane, who chairs the commission, said the inquiry will resume on Monday after going into recess in June.

The first person testifying will be community activist Vanessa Burger.

“As an independent non-resident, I’ll be giving an overview of the background and events leading up to the violence as were communicated to me by community leaders, most of whom are now dead,” Burger told ANA.

Her testimony will include efforts to obtain justice for the affected community, the role of the police and other state departments in the violence, political interference and the web of patronage.“I will end off describing the socio-economic impact to the community and hopefully the way forward,” she said.

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Willies Mchunu established the commission in October last year to investigate political killings from 2011 to 2016.

“We all acknowledged the fact that while the provincial legislature is characterised by robust debate and a climate of co-existence of political parties despite them holding different opinions, there are elements hell-bent on creating anarchy in the province,” Mchunu said when launching the commission.

“We have resolved to unite and grapple head on with killings associated with intra- or inter-political killings. We have agreed that these killings will be traced back to 2011 until 2016 ahead and after local government elections,” he said.

In May, Police Minister Fikile Mbalula said 33 people had died in the province since January 2016 in killings that were thought to be politically motivated.

Source – TheSouthAfrica

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