05/07/2012 Durban Wandile Mkhize's memorial service at Port Shepstone PICTURE: SIBUSISO NDLOVU

Port Shepstone - Political parties set aside their differences to remember the life of slain Hibiscus ANC councillor Wandile Mkhize at a memorial service in Port Shepstone on the South Coast on Thursday.

In an effort at unity, the ANC, Cope, NFP, IFP and the DA called on the provincial government, represented by MEC for community safety and liaison Willies Mchunu, to do everything in its power to end political violence in the province.

Mkhize, 34, was murdered last Saturday by gunmen who opened fire on him and a friend while they were walking close to his home. The councillor died before he could be taken to hospital. His friend, who is unnamed for his safety, is still fighting for his life in a South Coast hospital.

The memorial service was attended by hundreds of mourners from all political parties, many from other parts of SA.

Bheki Khuse, of Cope, told the crowd that it was time for the province to end political murders. “Those bosses who are out to destroy their political opponents must be rooted out,” he said.

In his address, Mchunu said that Mkhize was a wonderful man with mature political ideas and was a national asset.

“We will be sad for a long time,” he said.

IFP representative and fellow councillor Sfundo Ngwane described Mkhize as a “political bomb” who could not be matched by political opponents.

To applause, Ngwane said: “I wish I could ask God to curse all guns… they are not used to fight crime, but to kill innocent people.”

Mkhize will be buried in Margate on Sunday. - The Mercury