ANC KwaZulu-Natal Secretary, Mdumiseni Ntuli, says the party’s Secretary-General Ace Magashule was wrong to say he would only step aside if told by branches at a Special National Conference.
Magashule said this after his court appearance on fraud charges in the Mangaung Reginal Court in December.
“It will never happen whilst we are there. It doesn’t matter how educated you are, how wealthy you are, how poor you are; this organisation is an organisation of the branches of the ANC. That is why I will respect the voices of branches. If branches say I must step aside, I was elected by branches at conference, I will go back to a Special Conference and branches must say to me ‘comrade Ace Magashule, step aside.’ I will do so because it will be coming from the basic unit the branches. Nobody will remove us,” he said.
Magashule addresses his supporters outside the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court:
However, this didn’t sit well with some party leaders. Ntuli says Magashule’s stance is contrary to the 54th National Conference resolution. He insists Magashule is wrong in his utterances.
“Once a leader stands opposite to decisions of the movement, we can’t allow that, we can’t keep quiet on that. It won’t be easy to renew to the ANC because we have to depart from our comfort zones. When a person we were with at NASREC is wrong, it’s correct for us to look him in the eye and tell him we were with you supporting NDZ, but here you are messing up. You are a mess here so that when others who were not there when they messing up, who were in the CR side they don’t say it because we were NDZ. They must see that we are capable of seeing whose doing right or wrong.”
Ntuli says Magashule was wrong to refuse to step down:
The KZN leader, who is seen as a rising star in the ANC, was unrelenting, saying some NEC members were even scared to tell Magashule that he was wrong.
“When we were going to the NEC, you see that some comrades were scared to tell the SG that what he said in Bloemfontein was wrong. That thing is wrong and don’t ever say it again. It’s wrong you can’t do that, you can’t stand on a platform of the ANC and say a decision of the ANC you announced a month ago you won’t do it but will do another thing. These are the things that destroy the ANC.”
Magashule is facing charges of corruption, fraud, and money laundering dating back to when he was Premier of the Free State.
The Integrity Commission has also ordered that he steps aside pending the finalisation of his case.
This recommendation is in line with the ANC’s 2017 National Conference resolution that leaders facing criminal charges should step aside to preserve the image of the party.
ANC’s Integrity Commission recommends that Ace Magashule steps aside:
However, due to mixed views within the governing party on the matter – it has now tasked the National Officials to provide guidelines on how to implement the resolution.
The ANC officials are expected to present the guidelines at the next sitting of the NEC planned for later this week.
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