Don’t give #Oc­cu­pyLuthuliHouse ‘hooli­gans’ free air­time: Man­tashe

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG — African Na­tional Congress sec­re­tary gen­eral Gwede Man­tashe urged party mem­bers, who were “de­fend­ing” their head­quar­ters from #Oc­cu­pyLuthuliHouse pro­test­ers, to re­frain from vi­o­lence.

“Do not give them pub­lic­ity; al­low this to fiz­zle out. Do not give them air­time — they must pay for their air­time,” Man­tashe told sup­port­ers shortly af­ter re­ceiv­ing a mem­o­ran­dum from the or­gan­is­ers of the cam­paign.

He was es­corted by the MKMVA’s Kebby Maphat­soe and ANCYL pres­i­dent Collen Maine. The se­cu­rity de­tail around the three made up of po­lice and MKMVA mem­bers had to fight off ANC sup­port­ers who went to the party’s head­quar­ters in de­fence of their lead­er­ship.

Some mem­bers of the ANC had at­tempted to stop Man­tashe from re­ceiv­ing the mem­o­ran­dum, claim­ing it would set a prece­dent.

Man­tashe cau­tioned mem­bers against at­tempt­ing to at­tack those who took a stand against the party.

“If we al­low the ANC to be swal­lowed by cer­tain groups — then we will have no or­gan­i­sa­tion. You are de­priv­ing the ANC from hear­ing the sim­ple voices by block­ing these peo­ple from giv­ing their mem­o­ran­dum.”

Man­tashe also thanked sup­port­ers for com­ing out to de­fend Luthuli House.

“You have done what you should do, you have de­fended your or­gan­i­sa­tion, you have de­fended your head­quar­ters . . . that is good enough,” he said.

Man­tashe said he did not want a sit­u­a­tion where the media would re­port that there was blood­shed out­side the ANC head­quar­ters.

“Don’t try to beat them . . . don’t give hooli­gans free air­time com­rades. I am ap­peal­ing to you.”

As Man­tashe made his way back to the head­quar­ters, sur­rounded by MKMVA mem­bers, small scuf­fles, push­ing and shov­ing broke out as the group moved through the streets.

Mean­while, the pres­i­dency has de­nied that Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma was stalling the fi­nan­cial in­tel­li­gence cen­tre (FIC) amend­ment bill as part of an at­tack on Fi­nance Min­is­ter Pravin Gord­han and the Na­tional Trea­sury.

In a state­ment, Bon­gani Ngqu­lunga, Zuma’s spokesper­son, said media re­ports that the bill had not been signed into law as part of an at­tempt to “clip the in­de­pen­dence and pow­ers” of Gord­han and the South African Re­serve Bank, were “mis­lead­ing and in­cor­rect”.

“This is a gross dis­tor­tion of the facts,” Ngqu­lunga added, say­ing Zuma reg­u­larly re­ceives ob­jec­tions to the sign­ing of bills.

In this in­stance the ob­jec­tion came from the Pro­gres­sive Pro­fes­sion­als Fo­rum (PPF) un­der for­mer gov­ern­ment spokesper­son Jimmy Manyi.

Ac­cord­ing to Ngqu­lunga, a num­ber of bills have not been signed into law as yet, such as the ex­pro­pri­a­tion bill, the pri­vate se­cu­rity in­dus­try reg­u­la­tion amend­ment bill and the pro­tec­tion of state in­for­ma­tion bill for the ex­act rea­son that par­ties pe­ti­tioned the pres­i­dent about their con­sti­tu­tion­al­ity.

“When the Pres­i­dent is pe­ti­tioned not to sign a bill, he has to con­sider the mer­its of such ob­jec­tion fo­cus­ing mainly on whether the in­ter­ested par­ties raise valid con­sti­tu­tional is­sues. It is not the first time that the Pres­i­dent has taken time to con­sider a bill for sim­i­lar rea­sons,” Ngqu­lunga said.

BDLive re­ported yes­ter­day that Zuma was con­sid­er­ing ob­jec­tions be­fore sign­ing the bill into law and that a dis­cus­sion doc­u­ment was sub­mit­ted sug­gest­ing that all fi­nan­cial trans­ac­tions above a cer­tain thresh­old re­sort un­der gov­ern­ment’s se­cu­rity clus­ter in­stead of Na­tional Trea­sury.

The sug­ges­tion was al­legedly from Min­eral Resources Min­is­ter Mosebenzi Zwane, who had ear­lier is­sued a media state­ment an­nounc­ing that gov­ern­ment would in­sti­tute a ju­di­cial com­mis­sion of in­quiry into lo­cal banks’ de­ci­sion to with­draw ser­vices to the Gup­tas.

The pres­i­dency has since dis­tanced it­self from Zwane’s state­ment about the so-called ju­di­cial in­quiry. — AFP —

Gwede Man­tashe (cen­tre) is es­corted down the street dur­ing the #Oc­cu­pyLuthuliHouse protest AFP

Edgar Lungu

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