Mathews Phosa claims gunmen in video are linked to David Mabuza - report

2017-12-05 22:08
Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza. (Netwerk24)

Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza. (Netwerk24)

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Cape Town - David Mabuza, mooted to be the country's next deputy president, has been accused of using a "private army" to scare ANC members.

The claim was made by presidential hopeful Mathews Phosa after a video surfaced of a group of suspected ANC members firing a series of gunshots in the air, while they were in a crowd of people that included children.

The members allegedly intimidated ANC members, who did not favour Mabuza's "unity" campaign, according to an exclusive report by eNCA.

Phosa said he recognised the men as ANC members and added that they formed part of the "private army" of Mabuza, who is the premier of Mpumalanga.

"That video was shot after some of the branch general meetings (BGMs) recently," Phosa told the broadcaster. "They've been used to intimidate people."

Phosa’s campaign coordinator, Ronnie Malomane, told News24 that the people seen in the video clip were used to victimise people during BGMs.

"They will come and victimise people. If they see that you don't toe their line, these people ... will come in and grab you and kick you out. These are the people being used to manipulate the system and to beat people."

David Mabuza: from dirty politician to ANC kingmaker

Forget about Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and her questionable character. It now looks increasingly likely that a man who has been accused of masterminding the assassination of his political opponents, large-scale plundering of public funds, attempts to bribe journalists, and stashing away millions of undeclared rands at his farm will be elected ANC deputy president when the party meets in Johannesburg in two weeks' time to vote for new leaders.

Phosa's campaign is also set on challenging in court the Mpumalanga provincial general council (PGC) that was held last week. "We will lodge an application tomorrow (Wednesday)," said Malomane.

At the PGC, there were 223 branch nominations in which the word "unity" was written next to the name of the top six ANC candidates.

The "unity" nominations were recorded as abstentions, even though the numbers were higher than those of Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.

"According to our perspective, when you talk about unity, you are talking about an amalgamation of two different things in order to make one, but the chairperson failed dismally to unite the province," said Malomane.

He said Mabuza's unity idea confused and misled some branches, while others were "forced" to vote for "unity".

"This violates the democratic rights of those people."

When asked of examples of how people were forced, Malomane said that tangible evidence would be revealed to the court.

The Lowvelder, a Nelspruit-based newspaper, reported that Phosa's campaign would apply to the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, instead of a court in Mpumalanga, to have the PGC results set aside.

Mabuza, who has distanced himself from Phosa's claims in the eNCA report, was not immediately available for comment.

Mpumalanga is sending the second highest number of delegates, after KwaZulu-Natal, to the ANC's upcoming elective conference.

Both provinces have nominated Dlamini-Zuma as their preferred candidate to lead the ANC, with Mabuza touted for deputy president.


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