The African National Congress (ANC) says the decision by the South African Communist Party (SACP) to contest a by-election in the Metsimaholo Municipality in the Free State will further escalate tensions within the Tripartite Alliance.
The SACP has lined up 42 candidates to contest the historic by-election later this month. This could signal a turning point in the deteriorating relationship between the ANC and the SACP following last month’s sacking of the party’s leader Blade Nzimande as Higher Education Minister.
The SACP has called on President Jacob Zuma to step down as ANC leader and head of state. Briefing the media in Johannesburg, ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe expressed regret at the SACP’s decision, warning that it could exacerbate tensions within the alliance.
“The ANC must further interrogate and engage the resolution of the SACP on state power and its implications for the alliance. When you put a parallel team to campaign in a municipality you are raising tensions in the alliance and this we hope will be understood.”