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Low turnout at political tolerance meeting

Durban - A meeting in Durban's volatile KwaMashu hostels in a bid to cool political tensions ahead of the elections drew a handful of people on Tuesday.

The meeting, called by KwaZulu-Natal community safety MEC Willies Mchunu, together with the Independent Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) and provincial leaders of 18 political parties contesting the May 7 elections, saw the venue filled mainly with party leaders, media, and police officers.

KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison, Willies Mchunu. Credit: INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

It had been billed as an event where political leaders, including Mchunu, and the IEC would meet local residents in a bid to promote political tolerance.

The KwaMashu hostels, located in A-section of KwaMashu, has seen a string of politically related killings in the past three years. Located in Ward 39, members of the African National Congress, Inkatha Freedom Party, and the National Freedom Party have lost their lives in a bitter struggle for control of the ward.

Numerous people have been injured and a journalist's car torched despite an almost continual police presence in the ward. A number of police raids have seen numerous arms caches being seized during the past three years.

The ward is the only one the IFP controls in the eThekwini metro municipality.

Mchunu was expected to address the meeting shortly. - Sapa

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