For sake of coun­try’s fu­ture…

Vet­er­ans urge SACP to back Zuma no-con­fi­dence vote

The Star Early Edition - - POLITICS - BALDWIN NDABA

ANC VET­ER­ANS have asked the SACP to sup­port a vote of no con­fi­dence against Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma.

They also ap­pealed to the com­mu­nists to put pres­sure on the rul­ing party to al­low its MPs to ex­er­cise in­de­pen­dence when vot­ing on the mo­tion in Par­lia­ment on Au­gust 8.

This plea was made by ANC vet­eran and former City of Joburg mu­nic­i­pal man­ager Trevor Fowler in his ad­dress to del­e­gates at the SACP’s 14th na­tional congress in Boks­burg yes­ter­day.

Fowler said the ANC un­der Zuma had rolled back ma­jor achieve­ments that had been made since 1994. He said since Zuma came into power, the coun­try had been plagued by mas­sive cor­rup­tion. What was more re­gret­table was “the re­fusal of lead­ers to at­tend to the cri­sis”.

Fowler said the vet­er­ans had com­piled a re­port, For the Sake of Our Fu­ture, and handed it to the ANC pres­i­dent and his na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee.

The doc­u­ment de­tailed all the ac­cu­sa­tions of cor­rup­tion against the ANC gov­ern­ment, say­ing the pri­mary aim was to get them to ad­dress these is­sues.

Ac­cord­ing to Fowler, the doc­u­ment was given to the ANC in Novem­ber last year.

“We wanted the party to do an in­tro­spec­tion of it­self. We wanted them to ask ‘What did we do wrong? What did we do that brought us here?’ ”

He said none of the is­sues had been at­tended to, and in­stead, in May this year, the ANC had told vet­er­ans it would set aside two days for a con­sul­ta­tive con­fer­ence ahead of the pol­icy con­fer­ence.

Fowler added that the ANC never both­ered to con­vene a meet­ing with the vet­er­ans to dis­cuss the con­tents of the doc­u­ment.

He said he had been taken by sur­prise by com­ments made by Zuma when he ad­dressed del­e­gates at the con­fer­ence open­ing on June 30.

He said Zuma had claimed that the vet­er­ans were un­der­min­ing the in­tel­lect of ANC branch mem­bers.

Zuma also told del­e­gates in his open­ing ad­dress that he was sur­prised that ANC branches were do­ing noth­ing about the vet­er­ans’ calls for him to step down.

“You are quiet when peo­ple are tak­ing away your pow­ers. Any de­ci­sion for me to step down should be taken by branches. Power lies with the branches and not so-called vet­er­ans,” he had said.

But Fowler main­tained Zuma had mis­led del­e­gates, ac­cus­ing him of try­ing to avoid dis­cussing the cri­sis fac­ing the coun­try.

He said the ANC’s tar­di­ness in deal­ing with the is­sues of cor­rup­tion within its ranks would re­sult in vot­ers drift­ing away from the party.

An­other con­cern raised by Fowler was that po­lit­i­cal as­sas­si­na­tions had in­creased sig­nif­i­cantly in the past 12 months. He at­trib­uted this to the al­leged cap­ture of the Hawks and the SAPS.

A sim­i­lar view was ex­pressed by SACP gen­eral sec­re­tary Blade Nz­i­mande dur­ing the tabling of his po­lit­i­cal re­port this week.

Nz­i­mande said most of the vic­tims were SACP mem­bers, who were al­legedly killed by ANC mem­bers.

We wanted the party to do an in­tro­spec­tion

PIC­TURE: ITUMELENG ENGLISH

PLEA: Deputy gen­eral sec­re­tary of the SACP Jeremy Cronin at the party’s 14th na­tional congress in Boks­burg. ANC vet­eran Trevor Fowler ad­dressed the gath­er­ing yes­ter­day.

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