ANC North West PEC refuses to let Supra go

Supra Mahumapelo (Frennie Shivambu/Gallo)

Supra Mahumapelo (Frennie Shivambu/Gallo)

The ANC North West provincial executive committee (PEC) has decided that Supra Mahumapelo will remain as premier and provincial chair of the ANC following an urgent meeting on Wednesday.

Acting secretary of the North West Susan Dantjie confirmed that the PEC had instructed Mahumapelo not to resign as premier of the province because he had resigned without informing the party.

“Only the ANC can recall its deployee,” said Dantjie.

At the press briefing following the PEC meeting, Dantjie announced that Mahumapelo would be put on leave for an indefinite amount of time in order for the inter-ministerial committee to conclude its investigation.

Dantjie said that following the investigation, a decision on Mahumapelo’s fate would be made.

As the PEC held its urgent meeting in the morning to discuss the fate of Premier Supra Mahumapelo, his supporters disrupted the session by attempting to storm the meeting venue. 

To calm his agitated supporters who were singing and dancing outside the venue, Mahumapelo joined them outside and told them that: “When we are done with this PEC meeting that I’m chairing, I will come and address you, to tell you about the outcomes of the meeting because we are not accountable to ourselves but we are accountable to the branches of the ANC”.

Before the PEC meeting began, Mahumapelo was asked by eNCA whether he had resigned to which he responded by saying that he was asked by “the leadership of the province” to hold off on making any decisions and that he doesn’t account to himself but rather to the structure of the party.

Mahumapelo said once the PEC meeting was done, an outcome would be announced.  

During his budget speech on Tuesday morning, Mahumapelo informed the provincial legislature that he would be handing over a letter to the Speaker by Friday. He did not say what the letter would be about but his announcement was followed by reports that Mahumapelo would be stepping down.

When asked by News 24 if these reports were true, Mahumapelo responded by saying he would be “packing” his bags and “going home tomorrow”.

In an interview with the SABC, Mahumapelo told the public broadcaster that “by tomorrow (Wednesday) midday, Supra Obakeng Mahumapelo will be the former premier of the North West”.

On Tuesday evening, the ANC in the North West issued a statement stating that Mahumapelo had “voluntarily” decided to resign.

READ MORE: ANC NW accepts Mahumapelo’s resignation with ‘apprehension ― but great pride’

In the statement, acting provincial secretary Susan Dantjie said the party accepted Mahumapelo’s resignation “with a sense [of] apprehension – but great pride”.

“In his 35 years of revolutionary activism in the ANC, he has mastered the art of remaining simple and humble at all times, despite sustained concocted attacks against him by some friends and comrades.”

Dantjie went on to add that the party still believed “in Comrade Supra’s innocence until he’s proven otherwise” and encouraged Mahumapelo to “continue leading us on an exemplary role in society as you have done for so many years.”

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the North West welcomed Mahumapelo’s anticipated resignation on Tuesday night, but insisted that he should still be held accountable “for the collapse of the North West”.

Joe McGluwa, a DA leader in the province said: “The ANC and [President Cyril] Ramaphosa must hang their heads in shame for dragging their feet and accommodating Mahumapelo’s arrogance, all while the province burned and people lost their lives.

“Whoever the ANC deploys to serve as premier will continue where Mahumapelo left off – it will be more of the same,” he said.

Province in a crisis

Residents of Mahikeng started protesting last month in an appeal for the ANC to remove Mahumapelo as premier. The protest action turned into a full blown crisis when residents from other parts of the province joined in on the mass action, demanding better service delivery from the provincial government.

During this time, there was also a major strike, which is ongoing, by health workers demanding salary increases, better conditions in clinics and hospitals and the end of the Mediosa contract. The health strike has resulted in hospitals and clinics having no staff on call and patients not being able to access treatment or get help.

READ MORE: Ignored and sent home in a barrow

One of the many hospitals that has been affected by the strike action is Tshepong Hospital in Klerksdorp where protesters blocked the entrance of the hospital and refused to let healthcare workers from entering the hospital.

Staff are protesting against a shortage of healthcare workers and alleged corruption in the health department.

Read the ANC North West PEC’s post meeting statement here:

ANC Bokone Bophirima’s Post Special PEC Statement

This article has been amended to reflect updates

Mashadi Kekana

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