Protection for Zuma critic after death threats

South Africa has been shocked by the threats to Makhosi Khozi

South Africa has been shocked by the threats to Makhosi Khozi

South African parliament and police are to provide security for an African National Congress (ANC) MP after a number of death threats against her.

Parliamentary spokesman Moloto Mothapo said the decision followed a security assessment that confirmed “a security threat existed” against Makhosi Khoza.

Ms Khoza has been a prominent critic of President Jacob Zuma and corruption within the governing ANC.

Last week she received a death threat saying she had 21 days left to live.

On Tuesday, at a ceremony to mark Nelson Mandela’s birthday, Ms Khoza, 47, called President Zuma a disgrace.

He has faced numerous allegations of corruption, all of which he denies.

She was addressing civil society groups, unions and business leaders pressing for Mr Zuma’s removal during a no-confidence vote to be held next month, Reuters reports.

There is no suggestion that he is connected to the death threats.

The ANC branch in Ms Khoza’s home province of KwaZulu-Natal has called for her to face disciplinary action, South African media report.

Mr Zuma is due to stand down as ANC president in December and there are numerous factions competing to succeed him.

Whoever takes over would lead the party into the 2019 elections.

The death threats received by Makhosi Khoza have sent a chill down many a spine here in South Africa.

The nation is in shock that an MP’s life can be in danger simply because she has been critical of President Jacob Zuma’s style of leadership.

The threats she has been receiving via text messages seem to be taking the country back to the dark days of the political violence which claimed thousands of lives in the lead-up to the country’s first democratic elections, in 1994.

This reinforces what anti-apartheid struggle hero Winnie Madikizela-Mandela told me when she said “something is seriously wrong in our country”. -BBC

 

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