The African National Congress (ANC) National Chairperson, Gwede Mantashe has lashed out at former leaders of the party who have been criticising its incumbent, Cyril Ramaphosa. Mantashe was speaking on the sidelines of the Letsema campaign in Carletonville, West of Gauteng.
In the latest incident, former President Jacob Zuma accused Ramaphosa of illegitimately assuming the position of ANC President.
Speaking at the OR Tambo Lecture in Durban, Zuma says Ramaphosa admitted to buying votes it NASCREC in 2017 to the tune of R300 million.
Last month, Zuma claimed his successor was corrupt and should face treason charges.
Several provinces including KwaZulu-Natal, the North West, and Limpopo have slammed the public criticism of Ramaphosa.
“Any prior leadership who criticises their successors, to me are in the wrong, that’s my starting point. When you are in a leadership position, you don’t go public and criticise your successor or your predecessor because you have access to them,” says Mantashe.
Former President Jacob Zuma accuses President Cyril Ramaphosa of committing treason:
NEC member, Lindiwe Sisulu’s recent comments have also drawn criticism from senior leaders within the ANC. Mantashe also reacted to NEC member Lindiwe Sisulu’s calls for Ramaphosa to step aside while investigations are under way regarding the alleged theft of millions of US dollars from his Phala Phala farm two years ago.
Ramaphosa has denied any wrongdoing amid claims the crime was not reported to the police.
Mantashe says public criticism of the ANC’s top leader is an act of ill discipline.
“Ill-discipline, you don’t get it in the ANC. Your upbringing will determine your discipline and your level of discipline. Now if you miss something in that upbringing, you are going to commit mistakes politically, that is not necessary. My own view is that it is never necessary for you to insult a fellow leader in the open when you have an opportunity to talk to him face-to-face. So to me, all those people who are insulting the President are doing it for factional reasons in the lead-up to the conference. They must desist from doing that. They must confront him if they think there is an issue.”
Age not a factor
Meanwhile, Mantashe says age is not a factor in determining a leader within the party. This is despite the growing calls for a generational mix in the national leadership of the party. Mantashe is looking to retain his position as Chairperson of the continent’s oldest liberation movement.
Also vying for the position are former President, Jacob Zuma; David Masondo, and current Limpopo Chairperson, Stan Mathabatha – who has been endorsed by KwaZulu-Natal. Mantashe says candidates must be assessed on the contributions that they can make to the party.
Mantashe also condemned the killing of the ANC Deputy Chair of the Gert Sibande region, Muzi Manyathi, labelling it as a pure act of criminality and not political killing.
Public scrutiny of ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa condemned: Gwede Mantashe: