Prepare for resistance from the 'securocrats' - Mantashe tells NUM

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe. (Oupa Nkosi, M&G)

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe. (Oupa Nkosi, M&G)

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe has told workers to prepare for a fight back by securocrats in the wake of revelations of state capture and the exposé of beneficiaries of corruption within the state.

“Securocrats are going to dig dirt on everybody who they see is going to be an obstacle to their programme and agenda, and it [the response] requires boldness,” Mantashe told the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) central committee meeting in Centurion on Thursday.

The top ANC administrator warned that unless a judicial inquiry into state capture takes place, the broader tripartite alliance would be “finished”.

“Its [judicial commission of inquiry’s] importance is that you are making an effort to establish truth from facts,” he said.

The top ANC administrator was well received by NUM members, of whom he was general secretary before being elected into the governing party’s top structures.

In an address that varied between alliance politics, the state of the economy and the regime change threat to Southern African countries and its allies, Mantashe walked a careful line between criticising his own party and encouraging delegates to remain loyal to the ANC.

Referring to the alliance, Mantashe said it was in “a state of dissarry, by design”.

“Instead of appreciating our responsibility as alliance leadership, we are entering a beauty contest in the public space.”

Mantashe warned against supporting the public outcry for President Jacob Zuma to be recalled as head of state, saying it would cause “instant happiness,” but would destroy the movement.

“It will plunge the ANC into chaos, along with structures of the ANC in many regions. If we do that, we will split the ANC into two in KwaZulu-Natal. In the North West there will be chaos, in the Free State there will be a disaster,” Mantashe said.

He also warned against growing calls from the South African Communist Party to contest the elections against the ANC, inferring that such a move would be cowardice.

“Walking away from problems that face the movement is not bravery.
I don’t want to say it’s cowardice, but I’m inviting all of you to be part of finding solutions.”

Taking aim at one of his own, Mantashe said the ANC Youth League had been reduced to “henchmen”.

“Our own youth league has decided to be henchmen who get unleashed onto individual candidates. When you have a structure like that, you must appreciate you almost have no structure,” Mantashe said to applause and laughter.

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