Zuma’s apology ‘not adequate’ - Gauteng ANC chair

2016-04-26 10:11
President Jacob Zuma. (Mike Hutchings, File)

President Jacob Zuma. (Mike Hutchings, File)

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Johannesburg - Gauteng ANC chairperson Paul Mashatile has said the regional branch of the party is “not scared of anybody”, after stating that President Jacob Zuma’s apology over the Nkandla saga was not adequate, a report has said.

Mashatile, speaking at a meeting of ANC professionals and academics in Pretoria on Friday, said he had disagreed with the consensus to forgive President Jacob Zuma, and he was not the only one, The Star reported.

Mashatile said those who disagreed felt the apology was “not adequate”, and that rather discuss the issue privately “in dark corners”, they voiced their stances publically.

He also said that his branch was not enemies with the president, but that individuals within the organisation should be able to differ in opinion, or risk the ANC being “dead”.

Mashatile was also asked what would happen to him if he ever crossed Zuma.

He said after he had raised his opinion at the party’s NEC meeting last month, in front of the president, Zuma told him to “take an apple”.

‘Do the right thing’

Earliers this month, the Gauteng ANC's provincial executive committee issued a statement calling on Zuma to "do the right thing" to fix the political damage caused by the Nkandla matter, News24 reported.

The statement, however, stopped short of saying that it wanted to Zuma to step down as leader.

The next day, April 13, some Gauteng ANC provincial executive committee members proposed Zuma should step down as president of the country, but stay on as ruling party leader, News24 reported.

"Members of the provincial executive committee made several proposals, for example [that] the president says 'Because of these concerns I should step aside as the president of the republic and just remain the president of the ANC'," Gauteng ANC secretary Hope Papo told News24 Live.

‘Dirty agenda’

The ANC Gauteng's Youth, Women's and Veterans' leagues though differed to the executive branch, News24 reported.

"The right decision as per ANC Gauteng resolution is for President Jacob Zuma to finish his term," ANC Youth League chairperson Matome Chiloane told reporters in Johannesburg.

He warned against creating a trend of removing presidents, saying the ruling party did not need to help the opposition’s "dirty agenda".

"We call on society and especially our members to accept the apology, to focus on elections," Chiloane said.

"It takes a real leader to apologise and say 'I have made a mistake'."

Women's League Gauteng secretary Nonosi Mdlalose said they did not agree with the PEC's statement.

She said the Women's League would continue to support Zuma until his term ended, just as they had supported him during the 2012 Mangaung elective conference.

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  paul mashatile  |  johannesburg  |  nkandla upgrade  |  politics

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