Mantashe, Duarte move to end tension

2016-10-30 06:00
Gwede Mantashe (Picture: AFP)

Gwede Mantashe (Picture: AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

The ANC’s top leadership moved to defuse tensions in the party’s parliamentary caucus this week, after ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu’s call for the national executive committee (NEC) to step down caused disquiet in some quarters.

Four ANC sources in Parliament independently told City Press that the party’s secretary-general, Gwede Mantashe, and his deputy, Jessie Duarte, used the opportunity while in Cape Town for the medium-term budget policy statement to meet party whips and chairs on Wednesday.

They informed them not to get involved in the matter and to leave it to the NEC.

The meeting was held two hours before the National Assembly hosted Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan for his much-awaited mini budget speech.

“The meeting was not necessarily about Comrade Jackson, but it was to articulate the ANC’s priorities in Parliament,” said an ANC MP who attended the meeting.

The MP did not want to be named.

He said Mantashe and Duarte informed MPs that they had had a meeting with Mthembu and had engaged with him, and that they would also engage with those ANC members and structures who were issuing statements about Mthembu.

“This was to make sure that the centre holds ... they also said there were things that we did in Parliament that were contrary to the ANC’s position or policy,” said the MP.

Two other sources confirmed this.

They also claimed that the caucus was receptive of Mthembu’s comments and the majority of members were fully behind him.

Another ANC source who attended the weekly caucus meeting on Thursday said only one MP had sought to sneak into the agenda a discussion of Mthembu’s comments, but was shouted down.

The intervention by Mantashe and Duarte came as MPs and senior ANC members were pondering whether to join the march on Wednesday in solidarity with Gordhan.

Opposition parties were also planning to gain mileage by marching against what they called elements of abuse of state institutions for political expediency.

A number of ANC leaders have already expressed their support for Gordhan in public, with the latest senior leader to stand up being former National Assembly speaker Frene Ginwala.

Some of these leaders will be joined by various business sectors that also expressed unwavering support for Gordhan.

Employer organisations on Friday called on their business affiliates to join the march on Wednesday to show solidarity with Gordhan as he appears in court on a charge of fraud.

The National Employers’ Association of SA also extended an invitation to employees of its business partners to join in the march in what could be described as unprecedented collaboration to beef up the number of supporters.

“We have not received any request from the employees; if they want to go, they can go and join the march ... Yes, we as officials, we do support the march,” said Gerhard Papenfus, CEO of the association.

In an open letter to Gordhan sent to City Press on Friday, the organisation said:

“It is seldom that, within the context of a country, so much depends on one man. South Africa finds itself at such a point in its history and you, minister, are that man.”

The association said that, before submitting the letter to Gordhan, it ran the issue of support for him past its circle of influence.

Within a few days, more than 15 000 businesses and individuals expressed support for the minister, saying they would do whatever was within their means to hold his “hands up high”.

Magnetia Brown of the Road Freight Employers’ Association said it would be up to each company to decide whether or not to let its employees join the march.

“As a body, I do not have much to say. I cannot say yes or no regarding this march.

“The principles of no work, no pay will apply to that [if employees joined the march without the employer’s permission],” said Brown.

Read more on:    nec  |  anc  |  jackson mthembu  |  jessie duarte  |  gwede mantashe

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
16 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.