Remarks by the IFP’s Premier Candidate

Jan 29, 2024 | Press Releases

Fellow South Africans, compatriots, the leaders and the rank and file of the IFP, members of the media, I greet you all –

Today, marks an important moment of our journey as I humbly accept the nomination by my Party, the Inkatha Freedom Party, to lead our Party’s campaign in this Province into the crucial 2024 National and Provincial Election, as their Premier Candidate.

I want to first and foremost remember our Founder and President Emeritus, HRH Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who ushered our nation into the free and liberated South Africa we have today. Without his efforts, his leadership and him laying the solid foundation for a strong, resilient and resurgent IFP, we would not be able to go into the 2024 elections with so much dedication to rescue the people of KwaZulu-Natal from mediocrity.

It is humbling that the current leadership of the IFP is the product of his mentorship and vision for this Province. We stand firm upon his example of servant, ethical and moral leadership.

Friends; our beloved KwaZulu-Natal stands on the brink of the abyss.

In April 1994, the time had come for the fortress of apartheid to fall. The time had come for democracy, and the coming of the first democratic elections could not have been averted. At that point, our destiny was determined by an unstoppable force for right.

This time around, in the next elections, it is up to us to choose the path of our destiny. It is our responsibility as liberated South Africans to take hold of the reins of our democracy and steer South Africa according to the way we want things to be.

For this reason, the forthcoming elections will be more destiny determining than 1994. We crushed apartheid, we achieved democracy, and we now need a strong leadership to re-establish a new South Africa through the will of its people. We shall not dwell on the past any longer.

It is painful to see the Province of KwaZulu-Natal crumble because of corruption, poor management and unethical leadership. We have seen deepening levels of poverty, despair, joblessness, lawlessness and many social ills. The very economic center of this Province – eThekwini has collapsed before our very own eyes. That shall come to an end.

We have reached a point where, if in these upcoming 2024 elections we don’t reset, recharge and reboot, we risk becoming a failed Province.

The IFP is the Official Opposition in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal, and we control the majority of municipalities in this Province. We have seen IFP victory in by-election after by-election. This speaks to a KwaZulu-Natal that has trust in the IFP and its leadership. We have seen people who are fed-up with the current government. The IFP has a solemn duty before man and God to come to the rescue of KwaZulu-Natal and its citizens.

The IFP has grown from strength to strength. And we have a proven track-record in Government.

During our tenure as the Governing Party in this Province, even before the dawn of democracy, under the leadership of uMntwana waKwaPhindangene, we built thousands of classrooms, hospitals, institutions of higher learning, and decent houses.

Our late Founder understood that we must secure land for black Africans, hence the Ingonyama Trust. We proudly support Traditional Leadership, while championing self-help and self-reliance. The IFP will continue to strengthen its relationship with traditional leadership in this province. From 1994 to 2004, KZN experienced 10 years of sound leadership under 3 IFP premiers. We ran a corruption-free government.

We shall make KwaZulu-Natal great again.

I believe that a strong community, motivated by enthusiasm, goodwill and co-operation, may achieve a tremendous deal of good and overcome all obstacles in its path. We have yet to win the battle against criminality, unemployment, the rise of substance abuse, moral decay, poor service delivery, and a lack of social justice, equal opportunities and proper education. These evils do not belong in a successful multi-party democracy. If we wish to give substance to the form of democracy, we need to address the bread and butter issues of the people living here.

Today, I will not be outlining our plans. I will do so in due course after our Manifesto Launch at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on the 10th of March 2024.

I am simply here to tell you that I have accepted the nomination to stand as IFP Premier candidate.

From now onwards, the IFP will be in all corners of this province to deliver the IFP message and to listen to the people of KwaZulu-Natal.

Communities throughout South Africa have so much to offer in the way of ideas, concerns, aspirations and solutions. Wherever I go, I am again convinced of the profound contribution which individuals and communities can make towards the future success of our country. I have always known that our best hope for economic prosperity and social stability lies in ensuring that all of us have a personal stake to claim in our collective future.

As a former Mayor of Nkandla and now Mayor of King Cetshwayo District Municipality, I have championed development, infrastructure, and basic services to the poor and vulnerable. I have prioritised the interests of women, children and indigent households. I always put people first. The IFP has a track record known to anyone in this province.

I am a person that believes in hard work. As the IFP’s Premier, I will leave no one behind. I will make sure that every citizen’s interests are taken care of.

The dream of a prosperous province will only be possible if all of us vote. I therefore want to call on all KwaZulu-Natal citizens to make sure that they are Registered to Vote during this upcoming Voter Registration Weekend. Please visit your nearest voting station with your ID or go online to the IEC’s website to Register to Vote IFP.

Today, as I conclude, I want to take this opportunity to thank the President of the IFP, Hon. VF Hlabisa MP, the Deputy President of the IFP, Inkosi Mzamo Buthelezi MP, the Secretary-General Hon. SL Ngcobo MP and the entire leadership of the Party for their support and their belief in me. Our campaign will be a collective effort. We now await for our President to unveil the Party’s manifesto on the 10th of March 2024.

I want to close by repeating my opening words: we are the proud products of the leadership of uMntwana waKwaPhindangene. The next elections, for the IFP, is about honouring the legacy of a great man, a great statesman, a democrat and a servant of his people, to the very end.

I am proud to say that the IFP is the future. We are the Party you can Trust. We work for you. We will deliver on the revival, the recharge, the rescue, the hope that this Province so desperately wants and needs.

I pledge myself to be your humble servant as we start the process of rebuilding this Province. We will do so to secure the future of our children, and to honour the legacy of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

Let’s do it for Shenge!

May God bless KwaZulu-Natal.

I thank you.

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