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Zulu Chief Assails Tutu as a Hypocrite in Peace Call

December 30, 1987|MICHAEL PARKS | Times Staff Writer

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa — Zulu Chief Mangosuthu Gatsha Buthelezi, whose Inkatha political movement has been fighting for supremacy in South Africa's Natal province, denounced Archbishop Desmond Tutu on Tuesday as a hypocrite for calling for peace while supporting the rival United Democratic Front and the outlawed African National Congress.

In an angry statement that reflects the deep and bitter divisions among the country's black leaders, Buthelezi accused Tutu, the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 and the head of the Anglican church in southern Africa, of failing to commit himself to peaceful change and, instead, justifying the use of violence to end apartheid.

"Now is the time for Christians nationwide to be intolerant of posturing and to demand of church leaders that they abandon the kind of (liberation theology) justification for political violence," Buthelezi said of Tutu. "Either that or they should cross the lines to minister to those who are killers by training or by desire. Enough is enough."

End to 'Wanton Killing'

Buthelezi also called, as had Tutu on Sunday, for an end to "wanton killing for political purposes" in Natal, where more than 260 supporters of Inkatha and the United Democratic Front have been killed over the last four months.

But Buthelezi, president of Inkatha and chief minister of the Zulu tribal homeland of Kwazulu, rejected Tutu's proposal for a cease-fire while the United Democratic Front, a coalition of 750 anti-apartheid groups claiming 3 million members, and his own 1.3-million-member organization discuss the situation, suggesting that this would benefit UDF affiliates rather than Inkatha.

"Unless the archbishop publicly states that he has resigned as a patron of the UDF, there is no way that the public can know that he is no longer enmeshed in UDF politics," Buthelezi said. "As long as this is the case, he will not be regarded by blacks in other political organizations . . . as an impartial peacemaker that he wants South Africa and the world to see him to be."

Debates, Political Schisms

Large differences among opponents of apartheid have led to sharp debates and political schisms, and Buthelezi's public denunciation of Tutu shows how extensive the feuding here has become in the last four years, and how remote the prospects of unity are among the government's opponents.

"Archbishop Tutu's call for the cessation of violence is made as though he himself is whiter than snow and comes to his pedestal untainted by the forces that are doing their damnedest to perpetuate violence," Buthelezi said, referring to Tutu's role in helping found the United Democratic Front in 1983 and his endorsement of the goals of the African National Congress, although not of its armed struggle.

Buthelezi, however, attacked not only Tutu but, by implication, the broad anti-apartheid front to which the churchman belongs, its strategy and some of its interim goals. In doing so, he may have broken completely with the rest of the opposition to go his own way.

Black South Africans must return, he said, to "the hallowed values of the struggle for liberation that, for decade after decade, sought to bring about really meaningful change through nonviolent tactics and strategies."

Police headquarters in Pretoria, meanwhile, reported seven more deaths in the continuing violence in the province. More than 40 have been killed there in the last week.

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