Mbeki must tighten the leash around his supporters - statement by UDM Secretary General (20 March 2004)

The United Democratic Movement (UDM) is appalled by the hooligan-like behaviour of African National Congress public representatives, who lead by the nose a vicious mob of ANC supporters that pounced on unsuspecting UDM members while attending a rally that was to be addressed by the UDM Secretary General, Mailzole Diko, at the Samora Machel informal settlement in Philippi Cape Town on the 28 March 2004. The police had to intervene in order to disperse the gun wielding ANC mob. The ANC supporters seemed not to acknowledge the presence of the police as they continued to threaten UDM members. History seems to be repeating itself in this area as the same incident occurred before the 1999 elections where three UDM members were killed.

The UDM finds this incident a contradiction to what President Mbeki has been preaching since he and Jacob Zuma encountered a similar experience from IFP supporters in KwaZulu-Natal and Johannesburg.

The UDM would like to call upon the leadership of the ANC to tighten the chains around their members when it comes to political tolerance. The ANC needs to realise that it is not the only political party in South Africa that is capable of representing the majority in South Africa particularly in the Townships. In the vocabulary of the UDM, the term “NO GO AREA” does not exist, which is something that should by now be clearly understood by the ANC. This means that the UDM will use all resources at its exposure to protect its members.