Makhosi Khoza falls, is Derek Hanekom next?

The ANC instructed its chief whip in Parliament to remove Makhosi Khoza as the head of the parliamentary portfolio committee on public enterprises over what the party describes as an “irretrievable breakdown of relations between herself and ANC members of the committee”.

Khoza was among a handful of ANC MPs who signalled their intention to vote with their conscience during the vote – an indication that they would support the DA’s motion.

In a statement by Jackson Mthembu on Thursday afternoon, the ANC chief whip said her continued public attacks on ANC leadership and ordinary members who voted against the DA’s motion of no confidence in Zuma “have led to her alienating ANC members of parliament including those in her committee resulting in an ill-advised and out-of-line decision to boycott any activity she is involved in.”

On Wednesday, public service and administration minister Faith Muthambi and her staff failed to pitch at Khoza’s committee meeting to account for a trip to Cape Town by the minister’s family that was paid for by the state.

Mthembu said the ANC caucus tried on several occasions to rein Khoza in.

“The erosion of trust in her as a chairperson has also led to acrimonious verbal exchanges between her and members of the study group in meetings and on social media,” Mthembu said.

After the motion against Zuma failed, Khoza said the majority of ANC MPs had voted to “continue the reign of kleptocracy”.

Meanwhile, the M&G understands that ANC national executive committee member Derek Hanekom could be sacked as the head of the disciplinary committee over his public criticism of the ANC president.

Hanekom was the first NEC member to table a motion of no confidence against Zuma within the party structures.

On Thursday, ANC treasurer general Zweli Mkhize said if he were to face a disciplinary hearing, a recusal would be required.

“If anyone is part of the disciplinary committee and in that instance they may well be involved in an issue that takes matters to a disciplinary hearing then they will have to be recused.”

Mkhize said the ANC should be careful not to set a dangerous precedent when dealing with its members who voted with the opposition, which was a clear violation of the party’s constitution.

“As the leadership, we need to take an approach that is able to focus on the issue and be cautious in the approach. But it also is a situation that we need to make sure that we don’t create a precedent where all over people are going to say we are going to vote this way,” he said on the sidelines of the Progressive Business Forum lunch for women, in Midrand.

“You also don’t want to create an impression of an ANC that does not pursue issues of disciplinary action simply because there is some reasons that might make people fear moving on.” 

ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said Monday’s national working committee meeting discussed the implications of Hanekom possibly facing disciplinary action, but no decisions were taken.

“There were issues that were raised among others about the conduct of the chair of the disciplinary committee in which that conduct may compromise him in dealing with ill-discipline within the organisation… But removal must be the consequences of engagement, you can’t say as a starting point, remove him,” Kodwa told the M&G.

“The chair of the DC [disciplinary committee] must be above reproach in dealing with ill-discipline in the organisation, otherwise every member who appears before the chair whose implicated in other things, will request him to recuse himself.” 

Govan Whittles

Govan Whittles is a general news and political multimedia journalist at the Mail & Guardian. Born in King William's Town in the Eastern Cape, he cut his teeth as a radio journalist at Primedia Broadcasting. He produced two documentaries and one short film for the Walter Sisulu University, and enjoys writing about grassroots issues, national politics, identity, heritage and hip-hop culture.

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