Re-elected ANC Mpumalanga chair Mabuza will not purge opponents

2012-04-07 11:04

Mpumalanga ANC chairperson David “DD” Mabuza says his victory at the party’s provincial electoral conference will not result in the purge of his opponents from government positions.

Mabuza won without a contest, as his opponents declined nomination last night. Mabuza put out a message on social networking site Twitter saying “I am so grateful to the ANC delegates for electing me uncontested”.

The man who was tipped to challenge him, Clifford Mkasi, serves as the province’s health MEC in Mabuza’s cabinet. His other opponent, Charles Makola, is the manager of Nkangala district municipality.

Mabuza said: “People can’t be punished for a view?... I must be seen to be embracing them.

“Therefore, a question of a cabinet reshuffle emanating from the conference because people are putting (different) views, is not going to happen.

There are those who are mayors and councillors, all of them are protected”.

He said any cabinet reshuffle will be based on individuals’ performance and the needs of government.

Makola withdrew from challenging Mabuza in protest against a decision that candidates should be nominated from the floor.

Before the conference Makola had reached the threshold of 10 branches required for nomination, but found it difficult to accept when that nomination was set aside.

Another concern from the Makola camp was that about 80 disputes lodged by branches with regards to the nomination process were not tabled before the provincial executive committee (PEC).

City Press has seen copies of 55 disputes that complain about gun-slinging, branches convening without meeting a quorum and the forgery of members’ signatures in the nomination forms.

“This was a major setback for us,” said a delegate from the Makola camp.

“(The Mabuza camp) has once again stolen the conference. Why were they afraid of the ballot?” he said.

A PEC member, who spoke to City Press on condition of anonymity, took a swipe at national executive committee (NEC) deployees at the conference – public enterprises minister Malusi Gigaba and his health counterpart, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.

“It’s a pity that the NEC members allowed these irregularities to happen. Branches were never told how the disputes were solved and the PEC didn’t sit to look into them. It’s clear that (the NEC members) tolerated this just to push President Jacob Zuma’s agenda for Mangaung,” the PEC member said.

Towards the conference – the anti-Mabuza bloc of the ANC Youth League, the SA Communist Party and trade union federation Cosatu – complained of sabotage after Makola was suspended from his municipal manager job at Nkangala District Municipality and Gert Sibande District executive mayor Kgotso Motloung (also ANCYL provincial chairperson) recalled by the regional executive committee (REC).

Makola is yet to be charged after he was put on special leave following an Auditor General report that pointed to irregularities of about R12-million three months ago, while the PEC still has to decide Motloung’s fate.

The other leaders who were elected at the conference are:Deputy chairperson David Dube, secretary Lucky Ndinisa, deputy secretary Violet Siwela, and treasurer Andries Gamede.

The remaininig 20 leaders will be elected today, and the Mkasi faction is expected to contest those positions.

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