Picture: ISTOCK
Picture: ISTOCK

An ANC councillor in the Msunduzi municipality has been arrested on allegations of killing outspoken ANC leader Msawenkosi Qashana Mchunu in May.

The councillor is yet to appear in court to be formally charged. The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal confirmed the councillor’s arrest.

Mchunu was shot and killed at his home in KwaPata, in Pietermaritzburg, on the night of May 11. He was among those protesting against the isolation of ANC members and leaders who opposed the ANC’s Moses Mabhida region, which has now been disbanded.

Mchunu led a picket outside the venue where ANC national and regional leaders meet to resolve disputes. The crowd clashed with regional leaders’ armed bodyguards, who shot live ammunition into the air.

Two weeks later Mchunu was shot and killed.

The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal said it was dismayed that a serving councillor had been arrested for killing an ANC official. The party said that it was a criminal matter and the law must take its course.

Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu, the party’s spokesperson in the province, said it was against the teachings of the ANC to handle political differences with murder.

"Having one of our councillors implicated in murder is not only disappointing but calls for the ANC to be firmer on matters of discipline and personal conduct of its members.

"It is the view of the ANC leadership in the province, regions and branches that freedom is threatened each time any member of society is murdered irrespective of their position in society," she said on Monday night.

Meanwhile, the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal has disbanded the regional task team of the volatile Moses Mabhida region and that of the Lower South Coast because of instability.

These task teams were appointed earlier in 2018 to prepare the ANC branches of both regions for regional elective conferences. Mdumiseni Ntuli said they decided to disband the task teams because there was a lot of infighting.

Despite holding a regional elective conference two weeks ago in the Harry Gwala region — where many ANC officials have been assassinated — the situation has not improved. Members who complained about gatekeeping are threatening to go to court to challenge the validity of the conference and the legality of the leadership elected there.