Starting with South Africa, newly elected Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) president Velenkosini Hlabisa has vowed to hit the ground running in efforts of fulfilling the dreams of his predecessor Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi. Hlabisa takes over from 90-year-old party founder, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who has led the party since 1975. He joined the IFP as a teenager: Hlabisa joined the IFP in 1978 when he was 8-years-old. He has led in all party structures from branch level to youth brigade. A teacher by profession:
Hlabisa delivered his first address as party president in Ulundi on Sunday, where the IFP concluded its national elective conference. He assured party members that he would champion the fight against violence against women and children and grow party structures. Hlabisa thanked IFP members for believing in him and said his next move included a national campaign to spread his vision as the new IFP leader.
- Meanwhile the Newly-elected party secretary-general Siphosethu Ngcobo said that the resolution of the land issue carried with it the potential to heal the wounds of the past.
- The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) has called for all unused land belonging to the state to be immediately redistributed to the public.
- The party also reiterated its call for the expropriation of land with compensation, claiming that expropriation without compensation would hurt the country’s economy.
- The party said it planned to implement a robust lobby campaign for these resolutions and others which it took at its national elective conference in Ulundi at the weekend.
- Ngcobo said that the IFP had resolved to continue its backing of the Ingonyama Trust and communal ownership of land under the control of traditional leaders.
- Despite calls for legislation governing the Ingonyama Trust to be reviewed, the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) said it would fight to maintain the status quo.
- The trust controls about 3 million hectares of land in KwaZulu-Natal and collects over R100 million annually from those leasing the land. Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini is the sole trustee.