KZN PEC to meet with top six over arrest of political heads

eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede is seen during a media briefing. (Jabulani Langa, Gallo Images, Daily Sun, file)
eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede is seen during a media briefing. (Jabulani Langa, Gallo Images, Daily Sun, file)

The ANC KwaZulu-Natal provincial executive committee (PEC) is expected to meet with the party's top six on Monday about the future of outgoing eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede and issues in that region.

ANC KZN spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu told News24 the PEC would meet the party's top brass at Luthuli House.

Insiders told News24 the PEC was expected to discuss brewing factional battles in the province over the suspension and arrest of deployees.

READ | Zandile Gumede found out about redeployment via text, source claims

Gumede was placed on special leave and after a two-day special meeting, the PEC enacted the recommendations of the provincial working committee (PWC) that she be recalled along with the entire executive committee.

But she threw a curveball last week when she withdrew her resignation as eThekwini mayor, seemingly emboldened after a meeting with the top six at Luthuli House.

Fraud and corruption

READ | Zandile Gumede met with ANC top six before resignation withdrawal - sources

Sources in Gumede's circle told News24 that in that meeting, she was told top officials warned the executive against removing her as mayor pending the outcome of her fraud and corruption case.

In the case, she and others are accused of charges related to a R200m tender.

According to a well-placed source, the PEC is expected to detail how the arrest and suspension of heavy hitters will hurt their chances in the local elections in 2021.

"We are dealing with a problem where our leaders are being hauled to the courts and crucified by the media with little evidence. There is a strong sense that the police are being used to cripple the KZN and those that backed former president Jacob Zuma.

"What we have to be aware of is that this will affect us going into 2021. The president (Cyril Ramaphosa) needs to be aware of the perceptions that exist of the ANC in our province. Why target just KZN? We don't see any big arrests in other provinces," a source told News24.

READ | 'They crucified me in Women's Month' - axed eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede says she 'won't take it lying down'

Political killings have plagued the coastal province in recent years, leading to the establishment of a special task team to resolve more than 132 murder investigations.

Former Harry Gwala district mayor Mluleki Ndobe, was among those arrested for the murder of ANC Youth League leader Sindiso Magaqa. But charges against Ndobe were later provisionally withdrawn due to a lack of evidence.

Newcastle mayor Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba is out on bail for the alleged murder of ANC Youth League official Wandile Ngobeni.

The insider said secretary general (SG) Ace Magashule, who is said to be in Gumede's corner, will question the PEC about its decision to remove her.

"The SG met with her at Luthuli House two weeks ago along with some in the top six. He did say he had cautioned the PEC against removal before the court processes are concluded. They must answer to that. The PEC relied on the provincial working committee report, but that report was not endorsed by the NEC (national executive committee)," the source said.

GET THE NEWS at your fingertips and download the News24 app for Android here now. Get it for your iPhone here.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Will you continue to use WhatsApp following the company announcing a change terms of service which would force users to share personal data?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, the terms of service do not bother me enough to switch
53% - 9228 votes
No, I will be switching over to a new service
43% - 7514 votes
I've never used WhatsApp
4% - 697 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
14.92
(-0.52)
ZAR/GBP
20.51
(-0.87)
ZAR/EUR
18.18
(-0.87)
ZAR/AUD
11.60
(-0.52)
ZAR/JPY
0.14
(-0.58)
Gold
1864.96
(-0.26)
Silver
25.75
(-0.24)
Platinum
1117.52
(+1.43)
Brent Crude
55.55
(+0.23)
Palladium
2360.00
(-0.11)
All Share
64174.88
(+0.10)
Top 40
58969.37
(+0.19)
Financial 15
11940.13
(-0.48)
Industrial 25
85543.15
(-0.10)
Resource 10
63550.90
(+0.71)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo