- Ace Magashule addressed a parallel gathering outside Nasrec.
- He did not mince his words and launched a scathing attack on President Cyril Ramaphosa.
- Jacob Zuma launched a private prosecution of Ramaphosa, leading to Magashule calling for the president to step aside.
In an outright display of defiance, suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and senior party member Lindiwe Sisulu held a parallel gathering outside the ANC national elective conference on Friday.
Magashule delivered a fiery address to about 100 individuals, some claiming to be ANC veterans and others wearing delegate tags.
He said that, at this point, those not aligned to President Cyril Ramaphosa had two options - "either to fight or submit".
"We will definitely fight, comrades, and not submit to being bullied," said Magashule.
Magashule continued his scathing attack on Ramaphosa and the incumbent national executive committee, saying they were using their numbers to sideline anyone with a different view.
“The president has now been formally charged so he has to step aside like me,” says Magashule. #ANC55 @News24 @TeamNews24 pic.twitter.com/kHI7GdxSZr— Juniour Khumalo (@JKwritingz) December 16, 2022
The suspended secretary-general was addressing an event organised by the former MKMVA, in commemoration of the founding of the military wing in December 1996.
Magashule was accompanied by a grouping of senior anti-Ramaphosa ANC leaders, which included Sisulu, former health MEC in the Eastern Cape, Sindiswa Gomba, and the now expelled ANC member, Carl Niehaus.
READ | Magashule's appeal delays trial, as he accuses NPA of trying to exclude him from ANC race
Magashule questioned Ramaphosa's struggle credentials and claimed that it was he and other ANC leaders who had actually "fetched Ramaphosa from the cooperate space", and handed him the deputy presidency in 2012.
He called on Ramaphosa to step aside, saying Jacob Zuma had on Thursday launched a private prosecution of the president.
Zuma accused Ramaphosa of "being [an] accessory after the fact to crimes committed by among others adv Downer" in alleged breaches of the National Prosecuting Authority Act.
The Presidency said the move by Zuma was mischievous.
READ MORE | 'Abuse of legal process' and a 'perversion', Ramaphosa rejects Zuma's private prosecution
Advocate Billy Downer is prosecuting Zuma on behalf of the State for arms deal-related corruption.
Magashule said just as he had stepped aside after being charged, Ramaphosa now also had to step aside, because he had been formally charged.
He called on delegates to vote for leaders who would work to emancipate the majority of poor South Africans and not vote according to slates.