Mahumapelo re­jects task team of­fer

Mail & Guardian - - News - Paddy Harper

Axed North West pre­mier Supra Mahumapelo has de­clined an ap­point­ment to the ANC’s pro­vin­cial task team, say­ing he would not be part of the purge cur­rently un­der way in the ruling party.

The task team was set up by Luthuli House to run the ANC in the prov­ince un­til af­ter next year’s na­tional elec­tions.

In­stead, Mahumapelo has gone on the of­fen­sive, ac­cus­ing the gov­ern­ing party of con­duct­ing a “purge” against him since its elec­tive con­fer­ence at Nas­rec in De­cem­ber.

The move by the for­mer pre­mier, who is a staunch ally of for­mer pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma and who was re­called over the col­lapse of the North West govern­ment, comes as mem­bers of his dis­banded pro­vin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (PEC) pre­pare to go to court to chal­lenge the de­ci­sion by the na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (NEC) to re­move it from of­fice.

Mahumapelo, whose name has been linked to the pro­posed es­tab­lish­ment of a new po­lit­i­cal party com­pris­ing dis­grun­tled Zuma sup­port­ers, told ANC sec­re­tary gen­eral Ace Ma­gashule this week in a let­ter that he would not ac­cept the post.

Mahumapelo had been in­cluded in the pro­vin­cial task team in a bid to cre­ate sta­bil­ity in the ANC in the prov­ince, and his re­fusal ap­pears to be his at­tempt to show the lead­er­ship the mid­dle fin­ger.

In a let­ter to Ma­gashule, Mahumapelo said that, al­though he ap­pre­ci­ated the view that he could as­sist in build­ing the ANC in the prov­ince, the pro­vin­cial task team was the direct re­sult of a “purge” that had been “build­ing since Nas­rec”.

“There is a group within the NEC and the prov­ince which started work­ing on this ‘project dis­solve’ just be­fore and af­ter Nas­rec,” he said. “All means op­po­site to the demo­cratic val­ues of the ANC were used as a means to achieve this po­lit­i­cal ob­jec­tive, aimed at pro­ject­ing some of us as pari­ahs in our own or­gan­i­sa­tion,” he said.

“While the NEC has the power to de­cide any­thing, this de­ci­sion goes against the spirit of ANC unity and re­newal, and time will prove this,” he added.

Mahumapelo said the branches had been un­der­mined by a “mob”, which was now “be­ing cat­a­pulted and clothed with PTT [pro­vin­cial task team] mem­ber­ship”.

“I hope lead­er­ship [will] un­der­stand that I can’t be­have dif­fer­ently from my po­lit­i­cal con­science and con­vic­tion,” he said.

For­mer North West ANC pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary Su­san Dan­tjie and other mem­bers of the dis­solved PEC have in­di­cated their in­ten­tion to go to court to chal­lenge the de­ci­sion to dis­solve the com­mit­tee.

At­tempts to ob­tain com­ment from ANC spokesper­son Pule Mabe were un­suc­cess­ful at the time of pub­li­ca­tion.

“I hope lead­er­ship will un­der­stand that I can’t be­have dif­fer­ently from my po­lit­i­cal con­science and con­vic­tion”

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