Winnie criticises ANC in letter

2012-07-11 07:04

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela has accused the ANC of “shabby treatment” and abusing the Mandela name.

The Times newspaper reported that in a letter addressed to party spokesman Jackson Mthembu she wrote: “We [the Mandela family] only matter when we have to be used for some agenda.”

Mthembu told Sapa this morning: “We do not comment on internal communications.”

The ANC MP and ex-wife of former president Nelson Mandela reportedly wrote the letter in response to a request by Mthembu for a meeting on July 5 to discuss the ANC’s centenary celebrations.

The meeting was also meant to address her travel to Limpopo where President Jacob Zuma gave a lecture honouring Nelson Mandela yesterday.

Madikizela-Mandela did not attend the event. Ndileka Mandela, a granddaughter from Mandela’s first marriage, instead delivered a message from her grandfather.

Mandela’s wife Graca Machel also attended yesterday’s event.

In the letter, Madikizela-Mandela said the family was deeply hurt as they were not allocated a table at the party’s centenary celebrations in Mangaung in January before Bridgette Radebe, wife of Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, intervened.

Madikizela-Mandela complained she had been sidelined during preparations for the celebrations and that she was reduced to being a spectator in 2011.

She criticised the way the ANC’s centenary flame was taken to Mandela at his home in Qunu, Eastern Cape, in May.

“There was no parade of the soldiers as there was to me. It was clear that it was done (for) someone’s ego not to the family,” she wrote.

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