The African National Congress (ANC) leadership has vowed to address the concerns raised by that some disgruntled party members who stormed the venue of the launch of the Eastern Cape election manifesto at Badibanise stadium in KwaBhaca formerly known as Mount Frere on Saturday.
Irate ANC members disrupted the programme in protest of poor service delivery in their area, but ANC leaders intervened and restored order.
The disgruntled members stormed the venue and disrupted the proceedings, just as the ANC Treasurer General was addressing the ANC members about the party’s manifesto.
They were singing revolutionary songs demanding better services to the community of KwaBhaca.
ANC Treasurer General Paul Mashatile says the manifesto has answers to some of their concerns.
“ There is always a group of people who do that when they know their leader is there, we have noted that, it’s not like we don’t know, that is why the manifesto says many of our people still need water , electricity etc so the issue on the placards are already in the manifesto .”
Mashatile continued with his speech calling on ANC members to campaign and canvas for the ruling party.
“ Let’s take this manifesto to the people, lets show them that we are ready to deliver services to them. I know there will be those who are shouting , listen to them and tell them the manifesto is going to address their concerns.”
Speaking in the same event, South African Communist Party Provincial Secretary Xolile Nqata says they have reversed their decision to contest the elections alone as they want to ensure an alliance victory at the polls.
“This is the ANC we died for and we will make sure that we campaign together because we know that the ruling is beginning to address our concerns.”
Some senior party members tried to obstruct journalists from capturing the protesting members. ANC provincial chairperson Oscar Mabuyane has condemned the protesting members describing the protest as uncalled for and a sign of ill-discipline.
Minister apologises to media
Minister Ndabeni-Abrahams has since apologised to the media through a statement, saying “I would like to offer my sincere unreserved apologies for an earlier altercation with some members of the media during the ANC provincial rally in Mount Frere whilst trying to stop the singing Comrades.”
“I wish to assure the media and South Africans at large my unreserved commitment to media freedom. I sincerely regret the incident,” reads the statement.
SACP condemns the incident
The South African Communist Party (SACP) has described as unfortunate, reports that the Communications Minister attempted to stop the SABC from filming a protest in the Eastern Cape earlier today.
The SACP’s Alex Mashilo says they will discussing the matter with the alliance partners as well as the Minister.
“If indeed that happened would be unfortunate and we would have to talk about it. Both from the point of view of building the public broadcaster and our attitude as the alliance to the media and here I include the ANC, Cosatu, Sanco as well as ourselves. Because what is done by our representatives in government comes back to haunt us whether or not we like it or whether or not we have approved of it. So you may be a minister but what you do in that sphere of life may later reflect back on government. And this comment is not based on finding her guilty while we have not in fact heard her side of the story.”