Battle lines drawn as Mpuma’s Mabuza fights for another term

2015-03-25 18:14
David Mabuza (File: Beeld)

David Mabuza (File: Beeld)

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Mbombela - After years of alleged rigging and irregularities to keep Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza in power, the gauntlet has finally been thrown down by ANC members who say they have had enough.

According to City Press an ANC faction opposed to Mabuza’s leadership has come out publicly for the first time – two days before branches decide if he should stand for a third term.

Since Mabuza was elected ANC provincial chairperson in 2008, leaders of rival factions have not been brave enough to show face.

All that ended this afternoon when the disenchanted members from the province’s four regions launched their Operation Save Mpumalanga ANC campaign at Protea Hotel in Mbombela.

Addressing a media conference on Wednesday,  group leader Sipho Monareng said they wanted to stop:

- The rigging of regional and provincial conferences;

- Manipulation of branches;

- Subversion of the ANC’s internal democratic process; and

- The stifling of debate.

All of these irregularities, they said, started when Mabuza realised that he would be opposed when he was due to stand for election for a second term as chairperson in 2012. Mabuza’s former deputy, Charles Makola, and former Bohlabela regional chairperson, Clifford Mkasi, pulled out of the race at the 11th hour in protest against irregularities.

Monareng said the provincial general council, which is scheduled to start on Friday, was as usual not convened in line with the organisation’s procedures.

“A provincial general council is the highest decision-making body in between conferences and, therefore, takes decisions on behalf of the members. It must get a mandate from branches and branch general meetings did not sit before this general council,” said Monareng.

The provincial general council meeting comes a few months after all the ANC’s regional chairpersons in Ehlanzeni, Nkangala, Gert Sibande and Bohlabela declared that Mabuza should serve a third term as provincial chairperson.

‘Apartheid era spy code’

The chairpersons made this announcement last September when they were defending Mabuza against damaging information suggesting that he was an apartheid era spy code-named PN485.

Former ANC treasurer general, Mathews Phosa, got the spy report and forwarded it to national deputy secretary general, Jessie Duarte, last September.

The report alleged that Mabuza spied on senior ANC officials between 1985 and 1993 on behalf of the apartheid government.

Mabuza wants a third term in order to launch his campaign for a top six national executive committee (NEC) position in 2017. It is unclear yet which position he intends standing for but it could be deputy president, chairperson or treasurer general.

Monareng said that they would request the NEC to nullify any resolution of the provincial general council.

“All is not well in the ANC. The current provincial executive committee is the manufacturer, breeder and supporter of the crisis in Mpumalanga and that’s why we say the leadership has a put a system whereby branches are owned by individuals,” said Monareng.

“In Mpumalanga they buy you membership to lead the ANC. You remain a leader as long as you serve the master [Mabuza]. We’re the face of this campaign and we’re not scared to lose our jobs or to be expelled from branches,” he added.

Monareng said they would embark on a programme in all region to cleanse the ANC in the province.

Read more on:    anc  |  david mabuza  |  mbombela  |  politics

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