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SALGA condemns yet another killing of a Councillor

Posted: 31 August 2017

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The South African Local Government Association (SALGA) strongly condemns yet another killing of a Municipal Councillor, in this instance, Councillor Kwazukwakhe Mkhize, who has been gunned down in the Mkhambathini Municipality near Camperdown in KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday, 30 August 2017.

The killing of Councillor Mkhize comes in the same week that SALGA made a presentation at the Moerane Commission which is probing the spate of political killings in the province.  The continuing killing of councillors, even at a time when the matter is in the public domain, attests to the fact that our society is confronted by a bigger demon, a dangerous demon that has no shame and regard for human life.

At the Moerane Commission, SALGA has called for tighter security for councillors. The killing of municipal councillors and/or senior managers should be viewed within the realm contestation of political power, as an act that undermines our democracy.

SALGA believes that the current legislative and policy framework does not sufficiently protect councillors.  Drastic action by government is needed to prevent further loss of life and damage caused by disgruntled communities.  A safety and security manual for councillors should be developed to pave the way for a councillor welfare and safety net, in line with our laws, in defense of democracy.

Security must be provided to political office bearers at local level – VIP protection similar to National and Provincial level, this to include:

  • SAPS protection
  • Residential safety
  • Vehicles with adequate safety features

The rate of successful prosecution of councillor killings must be raised by turning councillor slayings into priority crimes. 

SALGA wishes to convey its condolences to the Mkhize family and calls for law enforcement authorities to bring his killers to book and face the full might of the law.

SALGA is currently hosting a two-day Municipal Managers Forum in George, Western Cape, where welfare and safety issues of Councillors and Senior Managers are on the agenda.

 
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