ANC sends out mixed mes­sages on VBS saga

Con­fu­sion abounds on fate of im­pli­cated mem­bers

Sunday World - - Sunday Report - By Ng­wako Malatji and Meta Mphahlele /Freddy Mavunda/Busi­ness Day

ANC NEC mem­ber Thoko Didiza has rub­bished a state­ment by the party’s deputy sec­re­tary-gen­eral Jessie Duarte that the party has taken a de­ci­sion that the Lim­popo ANC lead­ers im­pli­cated in the VBS bank­ing scan­dal must step aside.

Duarte told the SABC on Fri­day af­ter­noon that Lim­popo ANC lead­ers im­pli­cated in the VBS saga must step aside.

Sun­day World can re­veal that Didiza an­nounced on the Lim­popo PEC What­sApp group chat that Duarte’s as­ser­tions were a “mishap” that will be swiftly cor­rected by the na­tional lead­er­ship.

The mes­sage, which Sun­day World has seen, reads in part: “Com­rades am sure you am (sic) all have seen the in­ter­view of DSG yes­ter­day [Fri­day] which in­ferred on a de­ci­sion taken on Lim­popo viz a viz VBS mat­ters. For the record, no such de­ci­sion has been made. The of­fi­cials will cor­rect the mishap.”

The two con­tra­dict­ing state­ments have not only cre­ated con­fu­sion among Lim­popo ANC PEC mem­bers, but have also made it ob­vi­ous that the VBS saga has di­vided the ANC.

A Lim­popo PEC mem­ber, who did not want to be named be­cause he is not al­lowed to speak to the me­dia, fired a broad­side at the NEC mem­bers, call­ing them “child­ish” and “petty”.

“It is un­for­tu­nate that some lead­ers who are prac­tis­ing fac­tional pol­i­tics are us­ing the VBS saga to score cheap po­lit­i­cal points,” the ANC of­fi­cial said.

“It was clear that the NEC de­cided in its pre­vi­ous sit­ting that the VBS saga be re­ferred to the na­tional work­ing com­mit­tee (NWC) for de­lib­er­a­tions and fi­nal­i­sa­tions. The NEC po­si­tion was com­mu­ni­cated pub­licly by na­tional spokesper­son Pule Mabe and who­ever is send­ing a con­flict­ing mes­sage must just be ig­nored,” he said.

Lim­popo ANC pro­vin­cial spokesper­son Don­ald Se­lam­olela de­clined to com­ment and re­ferred us to Mabe.

Mabe said: “The NEC wishes to re­it­er­ate what it said in the [pre­vi­ous] state­ment that the VBS mat­ter has been re­ferred to the NWC for com­plete­ness and fi­nal­ity.

“The NWC is meet­ing in Mpumalanga on Mon­day (to­mor­row) and those who are im­pli­cated will be asked to come and present their cases if needs be, and the out­come of that meet­ing will be com­mu­ni­cated to the pub­lic.”

ANC deputy sec­re­tary-gen­eral Jessie Duarte

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