Durban - Much publicised allegations that former ANC Youth League secretary-general Sindiso Magaqa was killed for exposing corruption at the Umzimkhulu municipality were rejected during the Moerane Commission’s closing arguments on Wednesday.
The commission was wrapping up its work in Durban for advocate Marumo Moerane to compile a report to be handed to the Premier Willies Mchunu.
Mchunu established the commission two years ago to probe political killings in the province. The inquiry also found that the spate of killings at Glebelands Hostel in Umlazi, south of Durban, were mostly politically motivated.
The murder of Magaqa in September was highly featured in the commission’s work.
Several witnesses testified that Magaqa’s shooting was connected to him exposing corruption in the construction of the Umzimkhulu Memorial Hall.
However, Moerane and his co-commissioners Professor Cheryl Potgieter and advocate Vasu Gounden said evidence pointed to the contrary.
The commission’s evidence leader advocate Bheki Manyathi said Magaqa was killed for broader ANC infighting over leadership positions in the Harry Gwala region.
“It (Magaqa’s murder) was political. Ultimately we submit that there is no evidence to back-up the evidence of corruption regarding the hall at the Umzimkhulu municipality.
“That finding cannot be made, but on the contrary we ask the commission to make a finding to conclusively show that the evidence points to problems in the region and not the municipality,” Manyathi said.
He also told the commission the ANC’s claim that a third force was the motive behind the killing of its members across the province did not hold water.
Moerane said the third force should be similar to incidents of the 1980s and early 1990s between the IFP and ANC, which was sponsored by the apartheid government.
“Who is the handler of the third force here? Can we draw on historical incidents relating to our past where third force appeared to be behind state-sponsored violence where the state armed a particular group in an attempt to advance its agenda of divide and rule?” Moerane asked.
Manyathi said the investigation could not establish the existence of a third force.
“In short there is no evidence of state-sponsored violence,” he said.
He said the ANC should be blamed for its internal violence.
With regard to Glebelands, Manyathi partly blamed the ANC for internal fights and the eThekwini municipality’s failure to manage political violence at the hostel, which he said was an ANC stronghold.
He said ANC members were marginalising each other and the violence was caused by the failure of the authorities to listen to residents who were calling for the removal of a local councillor linked to violence.
“There is evidence that eThekwini municipal and provincial authorities are deliberately turning a blind eye to the situation at Glebelands because they are benefiting from the chaos,” he said.
He said the politicians had taken advantage of the situation by benefiting from fencing, lighting and construction of new blocks.
He said there was evidence the police were supplying firearms.