Mbuyazi community demands answers

Residents sitting outside the Mbuyazi Tribal Court on Tuesday, waiting for the tribal council to address them Photo by Muzi Zincume

AN ongoing financial squabble between the Mbuyazi tribal council and community members this week caused more uproar within the Mbuyazi clan.

Furious community members gathered at the Mbuyazi Tribal Court on Tuesday to demand answers as to why is taking so long to get their compensation payment – which they claim was approved by RBM years ago.

One of the residents, Eric Ntuli (67) told the ZO they are worried that they might get their money, alleging that the tribal council is interfering with the committee handling the matter.

‘We have heard that about 40 people have been paid their money and we are still waiting for our turn.

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‘The challenge is that we have heard that the tribal council wants to hijack the process from the legitimate committee that was elected to deal with the claims,’ said Ntuli.

Despite having been invited to attend, the media was banned from sitting in the meeting and the authorities demanded to know who had invited the media.

When the ZO arrived at the tribal court, the committee together with tribal council were holding a private meeting and a number of residents were waiting outside the court, demanding answers.

Ntuli said that the approved money that needs to be divided and distributed to the community is about R149-million and they demand that the tribal council must ‘stop interfering with the legitimate committee and allow the process to run smoothly’.

‘Our land is now unusable, we don’t have water, and we can’t collect water from springs anymore as they are poisonous.

‘Now we have heard that the council wants to form a trust fund with our money. We don’t want that to happen, we need our money,’ he said.

Leading clan member, Meshack Mbuyazi criticised the authorities who dismissed the journalists.

‘We invited the media so that the entire community would know what the meeting was about, in the interests of transparency and those who chased the media away are not legitimate in taking such a decision,’ he said.

Attempts to get comment from acting Inkosi Martin Mbuyazi or from Cogta authorities before going to press were not successful.

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  AUTHOR
Muzi Zincume

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