North West protesters demand reinstatement of leadership

2012-05-03 10:06

A group of young people burned tyres in protest outside the ANC’s North West headquarters in Mahikeng, demanding the reinstatement of the Ngaka Modiri Molema leadership and the disgraced executive mayor of the same district municipality Phaladi Audrey Saku.

City Press reported in December that Saku had been earning two salaries, the second being from the department of education, from which she was supposed to have resigned when she was appointed mayor in May last year.

Saku took home R38 900 as mayor and an additional R14 000 a month from the education department with all the benefits including medical aid.

The education department only received her resignation letter on November 29, six months after she had been drawing two salaries.

The ANC provincial executive committee disbanded the regional executive committee of Ngaka Modiri Molema and instructed Saku to resign from the mayoral position.

In return, Saku was offered a Speaker position for the same municipality, but she turned this down.

At yesterday’s march outside the ANC’s Mphekwa House protesters – made up mainly of young people – sang pro-Fikile Mbalula songs such as “2012 in Bloemfontein we’re voting Mbalula” and songs that condemned provincial chairperson Supra Mahumapelo, accusing him of being behind Saku’s removal.

Sport minister Mbalula is the ANC Youth League’s preferred candidate for the ANC’s secretary-general position in December at the Mangaung congress.

The provincial executive committee took a decision to disband the regional leadership after Ngaka Modiri Molema defied the provincial leadership’s decision to vote Saku out.

In January 38 out of 41 councillors of Ngaka Modiri Molema district municipality in North West endorsed the motion to oust Saku.

But the ANC’s regional leadership, of which Saku is part, ordered councillors to reverse the decision.

ANC North West Provincial spokesperson Kenny Morolong said the protesters came in several taxis and the protest lasted for about an hour before it was dispersed by police.

But this will not stop the provincial leadership from implementing the decision to disband Ngaka Modiri Molema regional leadership, he said.

“No amount of barbarism and intimidation will deter the ANC leadership from taking decisions that are in the interest of the movement.”

Morolong suggested there was more to yesterday’s protest than simply the decision to disband the regional leadership.

“The question is who are these people (the protesters) and who is paying for the buses to bring them to the provincial offices? What is the agenda of their sponsors?”

“If branches of Ngaka Modiri Molema were unhappy with the disbandment of their regional executive committee, they could write a letter to the leadership and appeal the decision,” Morolong said.

None of the ANC’s top five officials were at Mphekwa House during the protest because they were holding a meeting in Rustenburg.

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