East London - ANC leaders are divided because they are fighting over money and this in turn is threatening to divide members of the party, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Sunday."We as leaders are causing destruction. It's us as leaders who are divided. It's us the leaders who are not united. You the members we know that you are united,” he said in Mthatha at an event to celebrate the ANC’s 105th anniversary.
"It is us as leaders who are divided and as a result we go on to divide you. These divisions are not based on politics, these divisions are based on money because we are fighting about money, and nothing else. “
Ramaphosa, speaking to thousands of ANC supporters, said the national executive committee (NEC) was aware the party was confronted by divisive practices at all levels of the organisation.
"Leadership contests are accompanied by practices such as gatekeeping...
"Money is used to buy votes. When we elect new leaders there is money passed around to buy votes so that specific leaders can gain seats."
‘You must choose leaders you trust’
He said the NEC wanted to stop this.
"We want to send you a message not to allow people who bring you money with lists of slates to manipulate you. You must choose your own leaders that you trust. Leaders you know will never steal or lie to you."
Ramaphosa said the reality of factionalism needed to be faced.
"The NEC has asked that we pay close attention to the challenge of factionalism because it goes hand in hand with money... factions only exist to steal money from the state and its citizens,” he said.
"We must also acknowledge that there are instances where internal ANC processes have been infiltrated by individuals and companies seeking preferential access to state resources."
He said people were often recruited into the party, not to build it, but to provide votes to a particular faction.
"Many of the divisions that currently exist in our movement are divisions amongst the leaders and are not divisions among the members."