Traditional leaders set aside 60 days to deliberate on ANC affiliation

2016-10-31 12:24
Traditional and church leaders at Parliament to ask for a presidential pardon for King Dalindyebo (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Traditional and church leaders at Parliament to ask for a presidential pardon for King Dalindyebo (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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Johannesburg – Traditional leaders have set up a task team to research starting a new political party while leaders hold discussion with the ANC over their relationship.

"The ANC has, over the past 22 years, been unable to place us where we belong," Contralesa President Kgosi Setlamorago Thobejane told News24 on Sunday, following what he called a successful National General Council.

He said leaders were angry with the ruling party over its treatment and handling of traditional matters but had been willing to give the ANC two months to turn the situation around.

"We are allowing them to tell us how they are going to correct this," he said.

Thobejane, who is also an ANC Member of Parliament said Contralesa would also go out to communities to hear ordinary people's thoughts on the matter, this will be done through a task team which had been established at the NGC, its role would be to talk to leaders in religious, business and labour sectors, and they will also engage young people on the issue.

He told News24 that after two months traditional leaders will call for a national executive council meeting to reflect on what’s been achieved through both processes and then make a decision.

"If in that time we are not satisfied we will indeed form a political party."

ICC withdrawal

The meeting also discussed the South African government’s decision to withdraw from the International Criminal Court, referring to its notice of withdrawal which was served on the United Nations secretary general in October as a progressive move, criticising the ICC for attempting to try sitting heads of state, which it said would destabilise African countries.

Thobejane said although traditional leaders agreed with the decision by government, it was not done so wholeheartedly.

"A sitting king should not be prosecuted," Thobejane said.

He said traditional leaders found the ANC government unfair, in that it stated the ICC going after sitting heads of state as one of its reasons for withdrawing, yet it allowed for a sitting king, the Abathembu’s Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo to be taken to jail.

"Zuma must pardon him so his people can also receive their dignity by having their leader back."

The organisation also mulled over the fees protests which have been taking place at some institutions of higher learning in the country. Students have been demonstrating since September and often engaged in violent clashes with police and private security.

Thobejane said they were in support of the call being made by students, calling on parents to come out in support of their children, adding that Contralesa was also concerned about the violence.

Read more on:    anc  |  johannesburg  |  politics

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