Ramaphosa speaks out against 'counter revolutionaries' plotting to oust him

2018-09-17 17:49
President Cyril Ramaphosa (Felix Dlangamandla, Netwerk24)

President Cyril Ramaphosa (Felix Dlangamandla, Netwerk24)

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Now is not the time to focus on pointless meetings, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Monday, breaking his silence on claims that his predecessor, former president Jacob Zuma, was working with the party's secretary general, Ace Magashule, to unseat him.

Ramaphosa delivered a blistering address at the opening of trade union federation Cosatu's 13th national congress in Midrand, questioning whose agenda those who want to oust him were serving.

Ramaphosa was addressing, for the first time, reports that Magashule held a meeting with Zuma, ANC Women's League secretary general Meokgo Matuba and ousted ANC North West chairperson Supra Mahumapelo in Durban to allegedly plot to remove him as president.

The four supported his rival Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in the ANC presidential race ahead of the December elective conference.

"We should not spend our time on counter-revolutionary machinations in dark corners that undermine the will of our people," said Ramaphosa.

Some in the crowd started chanting: "Aaaaaace! Aaaaaace," as Ramaphosa continued his address.

ANC must 'plot the downfall of poverty'

Ramaphosa said if the ANC was to plan anything, it should be how to grow the economy and create employment for South Africans.

"If we are going to plot, let us plot the downfall of poverty," said the ANC leader.

At Monday's Cosatu conference Ramaphosa led a delegation of more than 20 ANC senior leaders including ANC deputy president David Mabuza, ANC national chairperson Gwede Mantashe, ANC treasurer general Paul Mashatile, Magashule and his deputy Jessie Duarte. Several ANC national executive committee members were also in attendance.

ALSO READ: Magashule says Top 6 is 'fine' with his response to Ramaphosa plot claims

Ramaphosa's address was his first major speech to Cosatu after the ANC's alliance partner backed his presidential race to replace Zuma.

Ramaphosa also cautioned the ANC and its alliance partners against going into the elections next year divided. Cosatu is expected to discuss its support for the ANC after the SACP said it was considering contesting state power.

"At this time, we must focus all our efforts on the elections rather than expend our energy on pointless meetings aimed at undoing the decisions of the members of the ANC," said Ramaphosa to more cheers and as some delegates in the hall stood and applauded.

"We have embarked upon a new path of recovery. We have taken decisive steps to address the severe challenges we face, but there is much more work to be done," he said.

The ANC's national working committee was expected to meet on Monday to discuss Magashule's meeting with Zuma and Mahumapelo.

Read more on:    cosatu  |  anc  |  cyril ramaphosa  |  ace magashule  |  politics

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