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Canaan Mdlethse's article titled "Prove it Shenge!" defies belief. Neither Mdletshe nor Sphamandla Ntombela, who is quoted in the article, was present at the IFP's Extended National Council; hence the entire article is based on hearsay alone.
Mdlethse's version of what transpired at this meeting is grossly inaccurate. As a Member of the National Council, who was there, I would like to set the record straight.
Never once did Buthelezi "single out" Sphamandla Ntombela as the man "behind the municipality's decision to hire buses to ferry Friends of VZ Magwaza-Msibi to Pietermaritzburg in April."
While Buthelezi did refer to the allegation that the Zululand Municipality had paid for these buses, he backed this up by adding that he had an invoice at his house to prove this.
Ntombela claims that it is up to Buthelezi to provide evidence to verify this claim. While I am sure that he would be willing to share this evidence if called upon investigations into the abuse of taxpayers' money is the Auditor-General's responsibility and not that of Buthelezi.
What is most interesting however is that Ntombela felt it necessary to defend himself in a national newspaper when he wasn't personally accused. Did a guilty conscience perhaps compel him to do so?
The basic principles of responsible journalism require journalists to assess the credibility of their sources and their facts before publishing stories. In future, it would be sensible of the Sowetan to check its facts first, before publishing bold articles based on hearsay alone.
Bonginkosi Dhlamini MPL