CAPE TOWN, Dec. 14 (Xinhua) -- The South African Communist Party (SACP) on Friday condemned the murder of a provincial secretary of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), saying the killing "represents barbarism of the worst kind."
"We strongly condemn this incident as it has no place in our democracy, but above all in our ANC-led revolutionary alliance," the SACP said in a statement.
Obuti Chika, ANC's regional secretary in the North West Province, was killed outside his house in Klerksdorp in the North West Province early Friday.
The murder came two days before the ANC convenes its 53rd elective conference in Manguang, the Free State to elect its leadership.
ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe said the shooting was a reflection of people fighting for positions in the party.
"People think if you are in a particular position you are an obstacle. They want to remove you," Mantashe said at a breadfast briefing hosted by the New Age newspaper in Johannesburg.
The SACP said the ANC as a movement in the North West has attracted too many criminal elements into its ranks who unfortunately masquerade as political factions.
"There is also too much money from proceeds of corruption in Municipalities and Departments that is used to continue destabilizing the province."
As the ANC is gearing for its conference scheduled for Dec. 16- 20 to elect the party's top leadership and adopt development policies for the next five years, there have been reports of disruptions, violence and internal fighting in events leading up to the conference.
The murder of Chika happened within weeks after the car of SACP Provincial Secretary Madoda Sambatha was torched at his home.
Unidentified gunmen had previously tried to murder ANC Provincial Secretary Kabelo Mataboge and COSATU (Congress of South African Trade Unions) Provincial Secretary Solly Phetoe continuously received death threats.
The developments "demonstrate the seriousness of the political situation of the North West Province," the SACP said.
The SACP voiced hope that the unfortunate developments in the North West can get the necessary attention of the ANC elective conference so as to ensure that the ANC get rid of criminal elements within its ranks, brings to an end the systematic corruption within the province and unite real and loyal members of the ANC.
"We call on all members of our movement at this stage to be calm and avoid making unfounded allegations or giving misleading conclusions," said the SACP, which is a partner in the Tripartite Alliance consisting of the ANC and COSATU.
Political murders are not unrare in the country. In July, unidentified gunmen shot dead Wandile Mkhize, the ANC chief whip at Ugu District municipality in KwaZulu-Natal province.