News24

Motlanthe lobbyists gear for fight

2012-10-07 17:00

Johannesburg - Lobbyists for Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe are planning to use his new biography, which is set to be launched on Thursday, to drive his campaign for ANC president.

Motlanthe has to date refused to declare publicly whether he would challenge President Jacob Zuma at the ANC’s elective congress in December in Mangaung or stand as his deputy.

The book, titled Kgalema Motlanthe: A Political Biography, by political writer and former trade unionist Ebrahim Harvey, tells the story of a politician who has largely been an enigma.

The book has been on the shelves since last Thursday, but is scheduled to be launched on 11 October at an event in Johannesburg addressed by ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe, to whom Motlanthe is close.

The ANC Youth League said the book’s last chapter was “proof” that Motlanthe will accept their nomination.

The chapter, A rough run-up to Mangaung, reveals Motlanthe’s concerns and disappointment with Zuma’s ­governance. Harvey writes that Motlanthe had hoped Zuma’s administration “would once and for all settle several major problems afflicting the party and government”, but this didn’t happen.

It also reveals that Motlanthe was opposed to Julius Malema’s expulsion from the ANC.

Youth league spokesperson Abner Mosaase said: “We’ve seen his [Motlanthe’s] book and the last chapter says exactly what he wants. We’re very happy that what we want will eventually emerge, judging from that chapter.”

The league last week nominated Motlanthe for ANC president and Mosaase said it would lobby for him.

“Kgalema doesn’t have a campaign. We’re driving the campaign ourselves until the time is right for ANC structures to tell him to stand,” the league said.

In an interview with City Press, Harvey denied the book was timed to coincide with the ANC opening its nominations process or with Mangaung. “That would be a fundamental misconception.

Coincidence

It is a rough coincidence.

The book explains the varied reasons for the delays I encountered,” he said.

Harvey said it took three years to research and write the book.

In his opinion, Motlanthe would “most likely” accept should ANC branches formally put forward his name for the ANC presidency.

Harvey, who spent more than 180 hours interviewing Motlanthe, said leadership in the ANC was decided as part of an “organic bottom-up process, begun in the branches, and not by leaders ambitiously and arrogantly volunteering their leadership to the members of the ANC”.

Several Motlanthe supporters claimed they fear intimidation and would not show their hand now, but the secret ballots cast in Mangaung will tell another story.

For this reason a Motlanthe supporter on the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) said Motlanthe was not “intimidated” by figures apparently favouring Zuma.

KZN

Last week, the ANC announced that KwaZulu-Natal, Zuma’s biggest support base, would take 974 of the 4 500 voting delegates to Mangaung.

The NEC member said Motlanthe would not back down before nominations closed.

A pro-Motlanthe Limpopo leader concurred, saying: “If you look at the timing of the book, where he says what he thinks about certain things in the movement, it’s his way of saying: ‘I am ready to correct what I think is wrong in the movement.’”

The NEC member said if Motlanthe was a genuine leader, “he must say now if I’m nominated I’m going to accept or decline. It’s quite clear Zuma is not going away. Why is Kgalema confused?”

Revelations about a controversial R238m improvement to Zuma’s Nkandla homestead and the ruling by the Constitutional Court that the president’s appointment of Menzi Simelane as national director of public prosecutions was invalid, will be used by the Motlanthe camp against Zuma, two Motlanthe ­lobbyists said.

But there are doubts whether this would be effective.

A pro-Zuma NEC member said: “Membership of ANC is not middle class so those things do not influence their decisions in any way.

Our people respect authority unconditionally.”

Polls

Opinion polls show that Motlanthe is a strong candidate to take on Zuma for the ANC’s presidency.

Zuma is, however, still slightly ahead in popularity polls.

A recent survey by Ipsos Markinor, which asked 3 500 South Africans across the country to rate the two leaders according to their effectiveness on a scale of 0 to 10, showed that Zuma is not far ahead of Motlanthe, with 6.1 out of 10 points. Motlanthe got 5.2.

Though the study did not focus specifically on the ANC leadership, it posed questions to party members who also presented similar scores.

Motlanthe is punted to replace Zuma as the ANC president at the party’s elective congress in December.

Zuma scored higher among ANC members surveyed: 7.1 out of 10, ahead of Motlanthe’s 5.7.

The biggest support came from Zuma’s home province, KwaZulu-Natal.

A poll by TNS Research Surveys showed Motlanthe had a 51% approval rating and Zuma scored 48%.

Of those surveyed in urban areas, 39% preferred Motlanthe as president while only 32% were for Zuma.

Rural villages were Zuma’s strongest support base and he scored lower in cities, according to the Ipsos Markinor survey.

“He has a huge influence among people in rural areas,” said Mari Harris, the director of public affairs at Ipsos Markinor.

“Those people do not have the same access to the media and Zuma is very much a populist man.”

Since 2009, Motlanthe’s support has been “going up and down” because of the “uncertainty” about him.

“People are not sure,” said Harris.

Zuma’s popularity dropped from 7.6 in November 2009 to 6.1 this year.

“He has not impressed in the past three years and people are asking questions,” Harris said.





Comments
  • Roto Rate - 2012-10-07 12:54

    A recent survey by Ipsos Markinor, which asked 3?500 South Africans across the country to rate the two leaders according to their effectiveness on a scale of 0 to 10, showed that Zuma is not far ahead of Motlanthe, with 6.1 out of 10 points. Motlanthe got 5.2.\r\n\r\nThough the study did not focus specifically on the ANC leadership, it posed questions to party members who also presented similar scores. \r\n\r\nMotlanthe is punted to replace Zuma as the ANC president at the party’s elective congress in December.\r\n\r\nZuma scored higher among ANC members surveyed: 7.1 out of 10, ahead of Motlanthe’s 5.7. \r\n\r\nThe biggest support came from Zuma’s home province, KwaZulu-Natal. \r\n\r\nA poll by TNS Research Surveys showed Motlanthe had a 51% approval rating and Zuma scored 48%. \r\n\r\nOf those surveyed in urban areas, 39% preferred Motlanthe as president while only 32% were for Zuma. \r\n\r\nRural villages were Zuma’s strongest support base and he scored lower in cities, according to the Ipsos Markinor survey. \r\n\r\n“He has a huge influence among people in rural areas,” said Mari Harris, the director of public affairs at Ipsos Markinor. \r\n\r\n“Those people do not have the same access to the media and Zuma is very much a populist man.”\r\n\r\nSince 2009, Motlanthe’s support has been “going up and down” because of the “uncertainty” about him. \r\n\r\n“People are not sure,” said Harris.

      koos.vanzyl.98 - 2012-10-07 17:26

      Check the provinces - Voting %'ages will be manipulated in Zuma's favor, as the African culture will show.

  • johan.jacobs.33821 - 2012-10-07 17:10

    Not much of a choice.

      colin.dovey - 2012-10-07 17:49

      Actually NO choice - he would not get in if the people voted directly for their own Parliamentary representatives.

  • larry.piggott1 - 2012-10-07 17:14

    When they voted for JZ, 4 years ago, they knew that they were voting in a crook. Why would it be different this time? Is it because he is a different crook?

      george.outremer - 2012-10-07 22:01

      It's about the party and the personal interests of party members. National issues do not count (as evidenced from Mashatile's statements in another News24 article). That Motlanthe came out in support of Malema is an indication that he wanted the support of the Youth League as a precursor to support of the branches. The nomination would then flow from this support. My concern is when he is elected as party leader and the next president - will this be pay-back time with the reinstatement of Malema?

  • wayne.nkuna - 2012-10-07 17:16

    Same sh*t. Diffrent person......

      colin.dovey - 2012-10-07 17:50

      Same person. Different sh*t. :-)

  • mphotant.thelejane - 2012-10-07 17:40

    The deputy president should be decisive and take a clear stand. Canvassing through a book doesn't help much. He should come clean and clear to the masses to express his view and stand.

      Thabopt - 2012-10-07 20:12

      Hence I say never trust this guy. he has never made a concrete stand on anything. he is like a shadow.

      Kongie Hector Nxumalo - 2012-10-07 20:43

      you are 100% right

  • sandy.langenstrass - 2012-10-07 20:26

    Can not say I know to much about Motlanthe.....but one thing I can say, is if he supports Malema......I don't support Motlanthe, because he is then (in my eyes) blind not to recognize a corrupt individual, with revolutionary ideals.... a sensible man (especially a future Presidents)would not allow himself to be associated with someone like Malema.

  • kombisa.mbakaza - 2012-10-07 20:32

    The proof of the pudding is in the eating, obviously this is a politicians territory as such I will stay clean

      sandy.langenstrass - 2012-10-07 20:48

      @kombisa....the problem with that saying that you quoted...is if the pudding turns out to be unacceptable....you cann't just turf it....you have that pudding/person for another four years....and at this stage our country can not afford another corrupt president.We need a responsible President who would be able to introduce massive change....for the good of the WHOLE NATION.

  • mathivha.obert - 2012-10-07 21:00

    Just put Zuma on the ANC’s own leadership barometer known as “Through the eye of a needle” I assure you his deeds won’t pass the grade to an independent assessor free of patronage! Refer to page 4-5, particularly paragraph 41 in its entirety here http://www.ancyl.org.za/docs/political/2009/Through%20the%20eye%20of%20a%20needlen.pdf We clearly don’t need leaders who are easily taken away by privileges attached to their office of authority to an extent that they are not ashamed to ironically exploit controversial apartheid laws such as National Key Points Act & discredited Ministerial Handbook in order to maximize office benefits without any ethical considerations. Many of those I call my leaders have been caught in scandals & blunders related to feeding their own selfish appetite for extravagant lifestyles. We really need humbled servant leaders who understand & respect people's needs & aspirations, leaders with excellent integrity, skills & capabilities to carry the hopes of millions who are still trapped in chronic inter-generational poverty. Leaders of self-esteem, those who respect money and spare no appetite for extravagant lifestyles as this hit hard on their moral & ethical standards. Leaders who always guard against the dangers of self-gratification & inflated egos.

  • Bafana Joseph - 2012-10-07 21:34

    Zuma must step down as a president of our country i dont care who become the president ...

  • logical007 - 2012-10-07 23:30

    Motlanthe supports Malemma!!!! BIG PROBLEM!!!!! Rather have Zuima!!... Malemma in jail!!!

  • andrew.mackie.90 - 2012-10-08 07:05

    Be it Zuma or Motlanthe, neither of these two are strong enough to pull this country out of the present day mire. All that I can see is tough infighting for the leadership to the detriment of the country. Not one of them has shown any leadership skills in dealing with the present strike action which is costing the country dearly. In fact their silence has allowed even more industrial action to arise.

  • honest.mrwebo - 2012-10-08 11:19

    Motlante`s campaign won`t see the light of day ! Malema is in his corner and not many South Africans like the idea of bringing the pig back into South African Politics , the struggle for economic freedom is moving forward as this was not an enemy of the movement in the first place. Before Juju was born the ANC was fighting for this and other freedoms and it will continue to do so after his long overdue departure .

  • sandy.langenstrass - 2012-10-08 13:14

    What has Motlanthe ever done to demonstrate his abilities to be the kind of President this country needs? The mere fact that he has stood in silence, when so many serious crises have been happening and had nothing to say, tells me he will be a weak leader...which is why Malema is rooting for him to be President...Malema will use Motlanthe, just like he has used others for his self interests....and will do the same to Motlanthe as he did to Mbeki and is trying to do it to Zuma....Why would Motlanthe even support this little devious runt knowing this?

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