Ncedana, Shilowa ‘cause of the prob­lems in Cope’

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - LYNNETTE JOHNS

RENE­GADE West­ern Cape Cope mem­bers have de­clared that party deputy pres­i­dent Mb­haz­ima Shilowa and pro­vin­cial leader Mbulelo Ncedana are the cause of di­vi­sions.

This comes af­ter the Cape Ar­gus re­ported yes­ter­day that a group was plan­ning to top­ple the cur­rent pro­vin­cial lead­er­ship by launch­ing par­al­lel struc­tures and threat­en­ing to scup­per all ac­tiv­i­ties planned by the in­terim pro­vin­cial lead­er­ship.

Party mem­bers have writ­ten to sec­re­tary-gen­eral Char­lotte Lobe ask­ing her to ad­dress a num­ber of their grave con­cerns. The let­ter, leaked to Week­end Ar­gus, is signed by Bernard Josephs, Nkululeko Ba­dini and Lian­sky Besten­bier.

Just a year af­ter its launch, the party finds it­self in a cri­sis. This week Al­lan Boe­sak ten­dered his res­ig­na­tion, say­ing the party was “in dis­ar­ray with many good peo­ple, hard work­ers, un­der sus­pen­sion be­cause they raised crit­i­cal voices that the lead­er­ship in the West­ern Cape do not wish to be heard”.

Last week, Si­mon Grindrod re­signed af­ter he aired his views on fac­tion­al­ism in the party.

In the let­ter to Lobe, the mem­bers claim the in­terim lead­er­ship, un­der Ncedana, had run roughshod over the na­tional body. They also said Cope leader Mo­siuoa Lekota was not given a chance to speak at mass gath­er­ings, and Shilowa was per­ceived by many to be at the root of their prob­lems through his per­ceived pro­tec­tion of an “un­pop­u­lar and un­demo­cratic in­di­vid­ual”. This is un­der­stood to re­fer to Ncedana.

They also want a re­port into how the pro­vin­cial elec­tion list process was ma­nip­u­lated.

They want Shilowa to clar­ify why he is pro­tect­ing in­di­vid­u­als and why he is not will­ing to ad­dress the dis­sat­is­fac­tion among branches.

The trio says Lekota is never asked by the in­terim pro­vin­cial lead­er­ship to speak at West­ern Cape gath­er­ings, cre­at­ing an im­pres­sion that “Com­rade Shilowa is a fac­tion­list sup­ported by the un­pop­u­lar Mbulelo Ncedana”.

In July, Cope spokesman Phillip Dex­ter at­tempted to deal with the is­sues in the prov­ince.

A num­ber of reme­dies were sug- gested to make the party stronger, but to date the task team es­tab­lished to im­ple­ment the rec­om­men­da­tions has failed to do so.

Dex­ter said yes­ter­day the let­ter would be dealt with by the work­ing com­mit­tee. He de­nied that there were dif­fer­ent cau­cuses in the party and said no con­crete ev­i­dence had been pre­sented on how the list process had been ma­nip­u­lated.

“If we are given ev­i­dence, action will be taken,” Dex­ter said.

UN­POP­U­LAR: Mbulelo Ncedana

AC­CUSED: Mb­haz­ima Shilowa

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