Sanco officials won’t go quietly

Suspended Sanco KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary Richard Mkhungo. (Motshwari Mofokeng)

Suspended Sanco KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary Richard Mkhungo. (Motshwari Mofokeng)

The South African National Civic Organisation’s (Sanco’s) national leaders will go to court “as a last resort” if its suspended KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary Richard Mkhungo continues to “defy” it and refuses to vacate its Durban offices.

It has also “accepted as final” the “resignation” of treasurer Roy Moodley, an ally of former president Jacob Zuma, who had earlier indicated his intention to stand as Sanco president. Moodley has repeatedly refuted claims that he stood down earlier this year.

As the organisation attempts to purge itself of the Zuma years, secretary general Skhumbuzo Mpanza said this week that its national working committee (NWC) had confirmed the suspension of Mkhungo.

Mkhungo, who had campaigned for unsuccessful ANC presidential candidate Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma at its December conference, was suspended last month for allegedly bringing Sanco into disrepute.

On Thursday, he was still in office and said he was not going anywhere.
“We are still functioning. The PEC [provincal executive committee] is still meeting,” he said.

Mpanza said formal charges had been laid against Mkhungo, and he would face a disciplinary hearing in the near future. ‘’We are going to deal with this act of defiance. The NWC met with the provincial executive, which accepted the suspension. He is acting on his own. He remains suspended and will be served with charges and called to a disciplinary committee,’’ Mpanza said.

He said Sanco would concentrate on the disciplinary process because the organisation did not want to rush to court. “If this does not work, we will then resort to other measures. The last resort will be to go to court.”

Mpanza said, in the case of Moodley, who had threatened him with court action over access to Sanco financial records, the matter had been “laid to rest”.

Moodley’s resignation “was accepted by all structures of Sanco, including its NEC [national executive committee]” and remained final, he said.

Mpanza said the NEC would meet by early October and that preparations were underway for the civic organisation’s national conference, which is scheduled to take place on December 14. The conference was convened earlier this year but postponed at the last minute because of infighting among the organisation’s leaders.

Mpanza said an independent external auditor had been brought in to carry out a consolidated audit of Sanco’s finances.

Mkhungo said he was a victim of “conference fever” because he had indicated his intention to stand as secretary general against Mpanza.

“There are two sets of issues. They are fighting with Roy over finances. With me, it is about conference,” he said. “They say I am defending Roy. I am not defending him. They must separate the issues as Roy has nothing to do with the province.”

Mkhungo said he was optimistic that the matter of his suspension “will be resolved”.

“This matter has to go to the NEC. The NEC will not accept this suspension as it is not lawful. I am optimistic that this will be resolved by the NEC and that I will remain in office, he said.

Moodley said it was “very strange that these guys say I resigned. I have a recording of them saying they accepted that I did not resign.

“They don’t want me to present my financial report as treasurer. All I want is to finish my term properly with the finances in order. I don’t know at this stage if I will stand again.”

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