ANC will not tolerate divisive behaviour: Besani

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African National Congress (ANC) says it does not understand why supporters of party secretary-general Ace Magashule targeted President Cyril Ramaphosa.

On Friday when Magashule appeared in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court in the Free State, his supporters burnt ANC t-shirts bearing Ramaphosa’s face. They also called on the President to step down, saying Magashule deserved to be the head of state.

Angry ANC members burn t-shirts with President Cyril Ramaphosa’s face:

Some political analysts have been reading the situation to mean demand for the recall of Ramaphosa.

 

ANC Head of the Presidency Sibongile Besani says the party will not tolerate divisive behaviour.

“There is no way that a t-shirt of a president of the ANC should be burnt because the president is the face, the head of the African National Congress. All members of the ANC are expected to act properly. We think the attacks on the president are actually unwarranted. The president has made it clear that he’s involved in the matter. Let’s allow the law to take its course and let’s give the SG decent support where necessary, unlike to actually throw expletives at the president of the ANC.”

ANC Head of The Presidency Sibongile Besani: 

Fraud and corruption charges 

Magashule faces charges of fraud and corruption related to an asbestos eradication contract in the Free State in 2014, when he was the Premier of the province.

He’s alleged to have benefited from the contract, which was tendered at R255-million but saw only R21-million used for the actual project.

Ahead of Magashule’s court appearance, the ANC said no members should attend the proceedings in any official party capacity, but rather as individuals and friends, should they want to show their support.  However, Magashule’s supporters openly defied this.

Magashule’s journey from Free State Premier to ANC SG: 

 

High profile arrests

Some residents of Odendaalsrus in Free State say they are relieved following the high-profile arrests in the multimillion-rand asbestos corruption scandal. Magashule is the eighth person to be charged for the irregular awarding of the 2014 asbestos roofing audit tender.

The would-be beneficiaries of the tender say they’ve been living in appalling conditions for years.  Residents of the sprawling township of Kutlwanong, Odendaalsrus, say their health continues to deteriorate because of inhaling asbestos.

Some say they’ve lived in the asbestos-roofed houses for more than 50 years. One of them is 58-year-old Galeboe Sesana. He says, “My parents passed away but I’m still living in that house. But the house when I paint the paint falls. Even now I’m drinking TB tablets and I do want someone to help to overcome this.”

64-year-old Puleng Ntholi echoes the same sentiments. “This roof affects my health because I struggle to breathe properly. Also, the rain comes in because there is leakage on the roof.”

Palesa Moeti reports…

The ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule was released on R200 000 bail on Friday. -Additional reporting by Aphumelele Mdlalane, Palesa Moeti 

 

 

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