- Zandile Gumede and Mike Mabuyakhulu have been asked to step aside.
- The move comes amid public outcry over Gumede's deployment as an MPL.
- She will continue to receive her salary, but won't be working in the legislature - pending the outcome of her court case.
Former eThekwini Metro mayor Zandile Gumede and ANC KwaZulu-Natal deputy chairperson Mike Mabuyakhulu have been asked to step aside while their respective court cases are finalised.
They have not resigned.
However, Gumede, who was last week voted into the KZN legislature, will continue to receive a taxpayer-paid salary, even though she won't be at work in public office.
This was revealed by the provincial ANC in KZN on Friday.
The duo will also have to present themselves to the ANC integrity commission, where their matters will be discussed at length.
When asked why Gumede was still going to be part of the legislature and receiving a public salary, but not working, ANC chairperson Sihle Zikalala compared the situation to a working suspension.
"In case you've got a suspension in the industry you are working in, what happens? That is the first thing you must ask. You get suspended. It is called suspension with pay. That's what happens. In our case, we are saying these comrades are not resigning, but stepping down."
He added that they would attempt to resolve the issue of Gumede and Mabuyakhulu hastily.
"We will assure it is processed within a reasonable space of time. We know the next cry is about paying people who are not at work. We are conscious of that and have even discussed that. We are going to ensure the matter is expedited and handled within a short space of time."
Zikalala further defended the backtracking on Gumede, saying the ANC had the ability to "self-correct".
"The ability of the ANC to self-correct is important. In this case, we are saying, as the ANC, yes, politically there was a decision taken. We implemented it. There was a response from society and we must show that we are listening to society too, while not undermining the rights of the comrades affected."
He said the ANC should be able to listen and go through a process of self-correction.
"The process of organisational renewal calls on us to always ensure that we go through self-introspection."
Deployment decision taken last year
In a surprise revelation, Zikalala added that the decision to deploy Gumede to the provincial legislature was taken in 2019.
"The decision was taken last year. When they were recalled, the ANC national officials with province said it would be an idea to take the outgoing mayor [Gumede] and deploy her in another field. If she remains a councillor here and you get another mayor, it creates an unhealthy situation."
He said making her an MPL was impossible at the time because the submission of candidates to the IEC could only be changed once, and their list had already been submitted.
"After a year, when we get a right to review the list, we had to start from that decision. That was not just a province decision, national was also part of it."