/ 25 January 2019

Implicated ANC leaders carry on regardless

(Delwyn Verasamy/M&G)
Masuku argued on Wednesday that neither party could supply any evidence that Zuma's legal costs had been exorbitant. (Delwyn Verasamy/M&G)

Damaging allegations at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture of ANC leaders’ involvement in corruption have not stopped the governing party from deploying those named to help its voter registration campaign this weekend.

Former president Jacob Zuma will campaign for the ANC in the final weekend of voter registration in Gauteng, despite the new allegations of corruption against him.

Zuma, former president Kgalema Motlanthe and Deputy President David Mabuza will headline the Gauteng drive to mobilise voters to register, which will focus on minorities, workers and students.

The rest of the party’s national executive committee (NEC) was expected to campaign in their respective provinces as usual, and the party gave no indication that the recent disclosures would result in their being pulled out of door-to-door and other campaign work ahead of the national and provincial polls that are likely to take place in May.

ANC Gauteng communications head Tasneem Motara confirmed that Zuma would be part of the campaign.

At the time of writing, the deployment of other implicated ANC brass, including Environment Minister Nomvula Mokonyane, could not be confirmed.

This week the party said it would not ask any of those named by witnesses to the commission to stand down from public or party office.

At a media briefing, ANC secretary general Ace Magashule said the party’s NEC lekgotla had discussed the “startling” revelations at the Zondo commission.

“The ANC reiterates its support for work of the commission, and again calls on ANC members and all citizens with information, to avail themselves to the commission to assist with its work,’’ he said.

But, the party would not ask members implicated to stand down because the evidence was yet to be tested.

“The commission in the nature of its work must hear all sides, so that when it makes its final determinations, it will be a just, thorough and fair outcome that takes the country forward,” he said.

Magashule said the ANC would “not be giving running commentary on the work of the commission” but would “make submissions at appropriate times”.