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Durban - The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal has been left red-faced as one of its councillors in eThekwini is due to appear in court on Thursday in connection with the murder of another ANC councillor.

The councillor, identified as Mthokozisi Nojiyeza, from uMlazi ward 80, was arrested on Friday and made his first court appearance on Monday. He was expected to appear again on Thursday in connection with the murder of uMlazi ward 88 councillor Sibusiso Maphumulo, who was gunned down on October 18.

Two relatives of Nojiyeza, Nkosingiphile and Phumlani Nojiyeza, and a third man, Sandile Mvelase, were arrested earlier last week in connection with the murder.

They were also due in court on Thursday.

It was not immediately clear how Nojiyeza is linked to the murder.

“While we understand that the law must take its course, we want to say, as the ANC, we are very embarrassed that one of our members has been linked to this,” said the party’s spokesperson Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu.

“We have implemented a programme of serious introspection, visiting branches to establish what is going on,” she said.

She warned party members to refrain from demonstrating outside courts supporting opposing sides. “As the ANC we must support the side of the affected family at that time,” she said.

DA councillor Thabani Mthethwa said: “The allegations further perpetuate the notion that the ANC is at the centre of political killings in KwaZulu-Natal, making it difficult for competent public representatives to action their duties due to fear of being assassinated.”

The police’s Brigadier Vish Naidoo declined to comment on the matter.

The Mercury