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Zuma is ‘disingenuous’ – Veterans pledge to protect uMkhonto weSizwe, ANC


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Zuma is ‘disingenuous’ – Veterans pledge to protect uMkhonto weSizwe, ANC

Zuma is ‘disingenuous’ – Veterans pledge to protect uMkhonto weSizwe, ANC (Camera & editing: Shadwyn Dickinson)

23rd January 2024

By: Thabi Shomolekae
Creamer Media Senior Writer


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uMkhonto weSizwe Liberation War Veterans (MKLWV) convenor Dan Hatto asserted on Tuesday that the MKLWV will take part in the protection of the uMkhonto weSizwe name, disputing that former President Jacob Zuma was a senior commander of the African National Congress' (ANC's) uMkhonto weSizwe military arm during the liberation struggle.

In December, Zuma addressed the nation in Soweto where he spoke about his political future and launched the uMkhonto weSizwe party.


Speaking exclusively with Polity, Hatto said it was “very disingenuous” for Zuma to have chosen December 16 to announce the formation of a new party using the name of uMkhonto weSizwe, using the original logos of uMkhonto weSizwe without any consultation with members.

He said Zuma wanted to “try by all means to exonerate himself” of the legal problems that he faced.


“As time goes on [he] is proving that this was just a ploy and nothing else for him to defend himself, for him to run away from responding to issues, especially in court. It was disingenuous for Zuma to have gone that far. For me personally Zuma is too much of an individualistic person. As revolutionaries we must be prepared to lead but we must also be prepared to be led,” Hatto said.

He was also emphatic that Zuma was never a senior commander of uMkhonto weSizwe, as was claimed by the former President.

“If Jacob Zuma takes himself to be the commander of uMkhonto weSizwe – which we dispute, I want to say it right here – we know our commanders, we know [the] people that we fought with…,” he stated.

The ANC has indicated that it will legally challenge the use of the name uMkhonto we Sizwe by the new political formation stating that the name belongs to the party.

Hatto said the MKLWV had written to the ANC, wanting to be part of the case, as it affected uMkhonto weSizwe directly.


Meanwhile, Hatto does not believe that the newly formed uMkhonto weSizwe party’s usage of the uMkhonto weSizwe brand will impact the ANC badly in the upcoming elections, noting that there are already people who have spoken out saying they will not join a party that is not clear about its own constitution and does not have policies.

“We as the ANC, the uMkhonto weSizwe Liberation War Veterans, without taking sides within the ANC itself but doing the correct thing of renewing and strengthening the party, we know very well as to what is it that we are supposed to be doing as military veterans in defending the ANC,” said Hatto.

He said while the ANC had made mistakes it needed the will to correct them.

Hatto said MKLWV will do “everything in its power” to make it possible for the ANC to win this year’s election outright.

He said the MKLWV would, on Tuesday, submit a letter to ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula indicating that the MKLWV wanted to be part of the election campaign.


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