Zandile Gumede 'suspension' illegal - ANC branch supporters

2019-07-15 17:48
Zandile Gumede. (Gallo Images)

Zandile Gumede. (Gallo Images)

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ANC branches that support the retention of corruption-charged eThekwini metro mayor Zandile Gumede, say the extension of her special leave is "illegal and populist".

"The decision to suspend comrades from council is illegal, baseless and tantamount to persecution," said Mzomuhle Dube, who led a press briefing by some eThekwini branches on Tuesday.

Claiming that most ANC branches in the eThekwini region backed them, Dube and three other ANC leaders said the party's 2018 national elective conference did not state that anyone who was charged must step down.

"The province reached such an illegal and populist decision without a mandate from branches that recently elected it to office."

He added that the group was not just supporting Gumede but also her co-accused, councillor Mondli Mthembu.

Gumede and Mthembu were arrested and charged with corruption in connection with a R208m Durban Solid Waste tender. The two were later put on special leave which the provincial leadership extended last week.

Since her removal as mayor, Gumede supporters have brought the Durban CBD to a standstill on several occasions through protests.

No communication from province

Despite provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli stating that all issues were communicated to Gumede and Mthembu, Dube claimed this was not the case.

"The fact that these two comrades had to switch on their television sets in order to learn about the decision is concerning."

He added that Ntuli had been in "attacking mode" against Gumede and Mthembu supporters. He blamed this on the previous provincial elective conference.

"The fact that [Gumede] led a delegation that didn't support his candidacy at our last conference should not be used to divide this biggest ANC region into factions. We call on the national executive to take over processes for the forthcoming regional conference."

Dube said branches of the ANC rejected the provincial executive because their term of office expired in December 2018.

He said they hoped provincial leadership would listen to their concerns, but that was not the case.

"We were arrogantly told the decision of the PEC (provincial executive committee) could not be changed."

Read more on:    anc  |  zandile gumede  |  durban  |  corruption
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