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24 Oct 2016 11:39
Jackson Mthembu told City Press that the way in which Gordhan was being pursued went "beyond political bankruptcy". (Oupa Nkosi, M&G)
The ANC has dismissed a call by its chief whip, Jackson Mthembu, for the party’s NEC to resign in the wake of various controversies.
“The NEC cannot resign because it was elected by the branches of the ANC. It is accountable to the branches,” party spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa, said on Sunday.
“If it feels in its own assessment that it has not provided leadership, it must account to the membership first.”
On Sunday, the City Press newspaper reported on comments made by Mthembu in which he declared that the ANC’s current leadership “reduced the governing party to something that leaves a bitter taste in the mouth”.
“Why should we not step down, given that we have messed up? All these things happened under our watch,” Mthembu was quoted as saying.
In the August 3 local elections, the ANC lost the key metros of Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay.
Most recently, the NPA’s decision to charge Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan with fraud, has seen various ANC officials speak out in support of him.
Mthembu told City Press that the way in which Gordhan was being pursued went “beyond political bankruptcy”.
Mthembu said he would use the next NEC gathering to raise his concerns: “After messing up, are we fit and proper to lead the ANC?”.
“Speaking out against what is wrong is the only way to save the ANC, or we will continue to guillotine one another,” Mthembu told the weekly newspaper.
However, on Sunday, Kodwa retorted, declaring that the party “won’t engage in public with the personal views of members of the organisation”.
Reacting to the article, Zodwa said that those ANC members making public comments needed to be “reminded” rather to use channels within the organisation.
Otherwise, “it gives an impression that the organisation is divided”.
Kodwa said that the party continued to meet with “all and any” branches to “resolve disputes” arising since the August 3 local elections.
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