The IFP is shocked to hear of the statement issued by the NFP in KwaZulu-Natal in which they are saying that the Department of KwaZulu-Natal Department of Arts and Culture “will sponsor the Bash Celebration of IFP President Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.” This is a blatant lie which displays the NFP’s lack of political morals. No such event is planned for Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.
According to the Department’s Officials, the function that to which they contributed, was held in August when all patriotic people in South Africa were honouring God for the life of the Prince and his selfless service to the people of South Africa. Either the NFP were asleep when those functions took place or they could not fully grasp the English language when this matter was discussed in the Legislature.
The NFP’s diatribe displays their political bitterness resulting from the fact that IFP is still growing strong despite their relentless campaigns that were aimed at annihilating the IFP. In addition, are desperate as they face political extinction in the 2019 elections. They are now resorting to the strategy of all political nonentities who never hesitate to abuse and attack the Prince when they wish to make a political name for themselves.
It is not the first time that both the national and provincial governments have honoured men and women of our country who made significant contributions towards the type of society we now have. Throughout this country there are statues and other symbols which stand as monuments of honour to many of our heroes and heroines. The Prince, falls among such heroes. No one in their right minds can deny the valuable contributions and sacrifices he made for this country and KwaZulu-Natal. The Department was therefore within their own right to honour this servant of our people.
Above that, the Prince is not an individual. He is the embodiment of the values and aspirations of millions of South Africans who place their hopes and aspirations on his shoulders. To honour him is not just to honour an individual. It is in fact a recognition of the value of all men and women who in their own ways worked for this country. In a broader context, the honour bestowed on him is one of the steps towards the fulfillment of the objectives set by the founders of this democracy. The founding leaders of our democracy set ourselves an objective of working for the consummation of reconciliation, peaceful co-existence and social cohesion. The Prince is a vital and integral part of that struggle to realize that noble objective. The Arts and Culture Departments knows of this responsibility to work for peaceful co-existence and social cohesion in particular among Africans. We salute the Department for that.
Mbongeleni Joshua Mazibuko
Date: 22 November 2018