Mahumapelo fights on
ANC accused of unfair treatment of province’s leadership
FORMER ANC North West leader Supra Mahumapelo has warned that the battle to overturn the disbandment of the provincial leadership is far from over.
The axed provincial chairperson, who stepped down as North West’s Premier early this year, yesterday said that despite the South Gauteng High Court’s ruling that the application he and four others brought was “not urgent”, they had already instructed their lawyers to ensure that it goes back on the court roll.
The group has, among other things, accused the ruling party’s national executive committee (NEC) of meting out unfair treatment against their province. They maintain that when the top leadership took a decision to dissolve the provincial executive committee (PEC) four months ago, it failed to consider a number of issues and instead “cut corners in dealing with complex matters”.
Shortly after court had adjourned, Mahumapelo said their target was now the next national general council – a platform he said they would use without “winking”, to raise their qualms.
“It is not our own insistence that
we come here (to court), we were forced by circumstances. If the matter is not sorted out now, the national general council (NGC) will (sort it).
“Our hope is that the NGC will resolve these issues so the future NEC does not have to cut corners when they deal with this.”
He lashed out at those who he said sought to settle scores post the Nasrec conference. He further raised discontent with the manner he said the NEC has been running its affairs since December last year.
Mahumapelo used the opportunity to lament the fact that unlike in other provinces, provisions were not made by the top structure to employ a task team to their province, saying that it doesn’t work when the rules of the game are changed where the North West was concerned.
In its court submission, the ANC said there was no basis for Mahumapelo to submit the matter as urgent, or for him to apply as the fifth applicant, but advocate Dali Mpofu contended that his client had the right to choose his legal representative, adding it appeared that the ANC sought to deny him (Mahumapelo) his right to legal representation.
“If Mahumapelo has decided to associate himself with the applicants there is nothing that the other side can do,” Mpofu said.
In also highlighting the urgency of the matter, Mpofu told the court that the case was a serious one that warranted urgent attention as it dealt with “weighty issues of constitutional importance”, ones he said might end up at the Constitutional Court.
But his submissions did not hold water as the high court struck the case off the roll. The continuous trend for provincial parties to haul their mother body to court over structural matters is not new but is a growing phenomenon. Last year, then secretary-general, Gwede Mantashe said the justice system would be there all the time and that in the event of court cases, the ANC would be readily available to deal with them.
National spokesperson Pule Mabe failed to respond to questions on the ANC’S view about the North West PEC matter.
Meanwhile, outside the high court, party members from the North West chanted songs while holding placards that called for the PEC structure to be reinstated. HUNDREDS of National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) members marched to the Department of Public Enterprises offices yesterday demanding the government save state-owned arms manufacturer Denel.
The union said it was dismayed that no financial bailout package was allocated to Denel, putting at risk thousands of jobs.
Spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi said the company wanted to reduce hours in the workplace and cut salaries by 20%. “We reject this because it’s not workers fault that Denel finds itself in this financial crisis. It’s because of poor decision making at the highest level, it’s because of allegations of corruption and looting at the highest level.”
She said the union was demanding the government injects the needed funds. |
FORMER North West premier Supra Mahumapelo and disgruntled ANC members are challenging the NEC decision to disband the provincialparty’s leadership. |