President faces new revolt in ANC ranks
Secret ballot poses a fresh threat
PRESIDENT Jacob Zuma faces renewed attempts on different fronts to try and unseat him, with some ANC MPs ready to use the secret ballot, if granted, to once again show their disapproval of his leadership.
Senior ANC MP Mathole Motshekga revealed yesterday that Zuma will be forced to resign at the party’s national elective conference in December if he refuses to quit of his own volition.
With the ANC policy conference approaching this weekend, several MPs told Independent Media yesterday that the discussions among ANC caucus members in Parliament have markedly changed from just voting for the party line on a motion of no-confidence in Zuma.
The policy conference starting in Nasrec, Johannesburg on Friday, was set to be a dress rehearsal of the suc- cession battle between those supporting Zuma and the candidate he prefers as his successor, Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, and Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
On Thursday, the Constitutional Court threw the ball firmly in National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete’s court, ruling that she had powers to institute a secret ballot.
Zuma told Parliament on Thursday that he was not in support of the secret ballot, a move which piled pressure on Mbete on what decision to take.
Yesterday some of the ANC MPs said that should a secret ballot be allowed, they would vote against Zuma despite the party instruction to back the president.
One senior party MP said although there was a standing decision by the ANC national executive committee to support Zuma, that could change if a secret ballot was allowed.
“When the matter comes up, the party decision is there. Whether that’s a secret ballot, that is a different matter.
“I suspect that a few people might vote differently. Maybe more, it’s possible,” said the ANC MP.
Another senior ANC member of Parliament said there were bound to be new discussions in the caucus following the decision of the Constitutional Court.
“The new discussion in the caucus on the court judgment is there because even some of the senior officials said there will be another discussion,” said the ANC MP.
But another long-serving ANC MP said the caucus would back Zuma.
“You are dealing here with ANC deployees here in Parliament on an ANC mandate. The situation should not have even landed in Parliament. The NEC should have given guidance on this matter because it will cause tensions,” he said.
“I hope the leadership will guide us because the situation on the ground is shifting against the ANC. If this is not addressed by December, it will cause further damage to the ANC,” he said.
ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu has insisted that ANC MPs will toe the party line irrespective of whether it was a secret ballot or not.
Mthembu said this week it was the position of the ANC that it would not support opposition parties in their bid to oust Zuma.
The secret ballot has become a proxy in the battle not only to oust Zuma but also to weaken his preferred candidate to succeed him, former African Union Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.
Yesterday, Motshekga said they would force Zuma to resign as head of state at the ANC elective conference in December.
“We had said we would appeal for the president to step down. If he doesn’t step down, the conference is coming and in that conference he will have no choice but to,” he said.
Motshekga was addressing the National Union of Mineworkers’ youth structure at Olympia Park Stadium in Rustenburg.
Motshekga said the time had come to root out corruption.
“The December conference is for us to say looting must stop.”
Zuma this week told Parliament that the ANC had elected him into power and that he was fit to lead the country.
Asked if Zuma was leading the party in the right direction, Motshekga said: “All we are saying is that if we have leadership that (undermines) people, we can no longer have that leadership.”
So divided is the alliance on the issue of succession that Zuma warned that the SACP looked set to contest elections on their own.
The communists and Cosatu prefer Ramaphosa to take over from Zuma.
On Friday night, Zuma told a provincial council of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal that the governing party needed to discuss the growing culture of breakaways when it meets from Friday.
“We still have not sat down to find the cause of the challenges. Right now a breakaway is looming… when we talk about these things.
“These are the beginnings of what will soon happen,” the president warned.
“Even Cosatu is breaking away… Even the party (SACP) looks set to follow suit. It is speeding towards breaking away,” Zuma said. DRUM roll, please! Benni McCarthy’s in the Cape Town area, and tomorrow will be his first day as coach of the country’s fastest-growing football club, Cape Town City.
Hanover Park boytjie McCarthy, 39, is Bafana Bafana’s leading scorer with 32 goals, and is also remembered for his role in TKZee’s popular kwaito hit, Shibobo.
He was named City coach two weeks ago after the departure of Eric Tinkler to SuperSport United. McCarthy arrived in the city from his home in Scotland today.
He is a Uefa Champions League winner with Portuguese club FC Porto, and also played for English top-flight teams Blackburn Rovers and West Ham United.
McCarthy played for Premier Soccer League (PSL) giants Orlando Pirates before his retirement in 2013.
He decided to become a coach and said he had a fiveyear plan for his “second” career. “I wanted to complete all my coaching badges (first), and I didn’t want any distraction from it,” McCarthy said.
“I wasn’t looking for a coaching job (right now). I wasn’t putting my name forward for anything, because I wanted to complete my whole five-year plan, from Level 2, Uefa B, Uefa A and Uefa pro licence.”
Four years into his plan, City offered McCarthy his first head coaching position, and his wife Stacey and daughter Lima, 5, told him to accept the challenge.
McCarthy, who wants a topeight finish in the PSL next season, said it won’t be easy managing the club after it finished third in the league and won the Telkom Knockout in its debut season in 2016/17.
“I want to play good football, the kind of football that people want to pay money to come and see. Also, to play with a winning mentality,” he said.
Beleaguered President Jacob Zuma is under fresh waves of attack.