The Gauteng Radical Economic Transformation (RET) Zuma supporters’ group is continuing to pile the pressure on President Cyril Ramaphosa, by calling on the ANC to investigate the use of money during the party’s conference in Nasrec three years ago.
In a statement, the group said it wants the matter to be probed speedily. The group includes Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association spokesperson Carl Niehaus.
The group accused Ramaphosa of buying votes during his campaign for the party’s 54th national conference, in order to win the presidential position.
“There are persistent and serious allegations that continue to surface that huge amounts of money were raised and used in order to buy votes at the 54th national conference, and thus determined the outcome of the leadership elections.
“It must be emphasised that calls for these allegations to be thoroughly investigated, and the sealed bank accounts in question to be opened, are not factional or intended to undermine the leadership of the ANC,” read the statement.
These allegations have also been made by Nelson Mandela Bay ANC councillor Andile Lungisa, who last week wrote a scathing letter to Ramaphosa calling him to appear to the party’s integrity commission for his CR17 campaign.
Lungisa who is part of the RET forces, is a staunch supporter of former president Jacob Zuma and Ramaphosa’s ANC presidential opponent in 2017, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Three years into Ramaphosa’s election as ANC president and subsequently that of the country, Lungisa wants him to face the music for what he says is a threat to the party’s national democratic revolution.
“In the history of the ANC this has never happened. It is foreign culture in the movement where money is raised by business people in support of a candidate to emerge using their financial influence which was proven to influence the conference outcomes,” he said in his letter.
On Tuesday, in a statement written by Niehaus, the group condemned the country’s judiciary system after Lungisa was told that he has until Thursday to report to correctional services to begin serving his effective two-year jail term for assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
A group of former ANC Youth League leaders who are behind a campaign called Justice for Lungisa kicked off the campaign with a statement on Monday saying Lungisa would make an application to the Constitutional Court to stay his imminent move to jail.
The courts have been unanimous in upholding Lungisa’s two-year effective prison sentence for smashing a glass water jug on the head of DA councillor Rano Kayser during a heated Nelson Mandela Metropolitan council meeting in October 2016. Kayser was seriously injured.
The high court in Makhanda dismissed Lungisa’s appeal against both the conviction and sentence.
Five Supreme Court of Appeal judges last week unanimously found the two-year sentence fitted the crime.
Niehaus commended Lungisa for the courage that “he continues to display in being one of those committed ANC members who refused to be silenced on these critical issues.”
“It is our considered view that comrade Lungisa is being victimised for the principled political positions that he so fearlessly espouses. In this regard the harshness of the sentence that he received for the incident, where he defended himself during a fight in 2016 in the council chambers of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Council, is reason for serious concern.
“There is a strong case to be made that comrade Lungisa was acting in self-defence, as he was surrounded by five men who were attacking him with their fists. The comment by the presiding officers when delivering the sentence in court, to the effect that comrade Lungisa is not an ordinary South African, means that they inadvertently entered the political realm, compromised their impartiality, and left themselves open to accusations of prejudice and partiality,” he said.