Mathale warns comrades over 'vulgar language'
Polokwane - Newly-elected ANC Limpopo chair Cassel Mathale on Tuesday bemoaned "foreign tendencies" like the use of vulgar language, saying these would destroy the party if not nipped in the bud.
The four-day conference, held to elect new party leaders in the province, had exposed serious weaknesses in the ruling party, he said in his closing remarks in Polokwane.
"The usage of vulgar language is a phenomenon becoming a trend in the movement. Lack of patience with each other is also mounting at an alarming speed."
Delegates loyal to Mathale, including suspended ANC Youth League president Julius Malema, mocked President Jacob Zuma during the conference, referring to him as "shower man".
They chanted derogatory songs while making a shower head with their hands over their heads, a reference to Zuma's remarks during his rape trial in 2006.
He told the High Court in Johannesburg he took a shower after having unprotected sex with an HIV-positive woman. He was later acquitted.
This was seen as a direct attack on Zuma and his governance, especially after the national government recently took over the running of five Limpopo provincial departments due to mismanagement.
Malema was on Tuesday elected as a provincial executive committee member, with 592 votes. He was 17th on the list of 20 names.
Supporters of Arts and Culture Deputy Minister Joe Phaahla, who lost out to Mathale, belted out chants mocking his leadership.
Mathale, who is also Limpopo's premier, told delegates political education would be made a priority in the province.
He said another issue was party members' inability to accept the outcomes of ANC internal democratic processes.
Internal processes like elections were never intended to divide, but to unite members.
He warned them against celebrating such results in the same way the ANC celebrated an election victory against the opposition.
The cause of the problem might be the manner in which members campaigned for positions. They invested emotions and personal interests in elective processes, even resorting to doing wrong to win.
"If not addressed, [this] will grind and destroy our movement... ."
Mathale said the ANC would fail to deliver on its priorities if it did not have disciplined and committed cadres who understood the politics of the movement.