The Citizen (Gauteng)
Ace leads the revolt
Suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and his cohorts are openly rebelling against President Cyril Ramaphosa – and former president Thabo Mbeki may have fuelled the revolt by giving legitimacy to the Magashule-Zuma faction.
The ANC’s suspension of secretary-general Ace Magashule seems to have boosted Cyril Ramaphosa’s political fortunes with support for him coming from all quarters, including his ancestral province, Limpopo.
At this weekend’ meeting of the party’s national executive committee (NEC), Limpopo ANC chair Stan Mathabatha, a Ramaphosa political ally, apparently praised the president claiming that despite the ongoing infighting, Ramaphosa was “still seen as one of the best presidents ever” in South Africa.
It’s not the first time Mathabatha has publicly praised Ramaphosa’s leadership. He was the first ANC leader to endorse the CR17 campaign, during a 2016 May Day rally in Seshego when he called Ramaphosa a “son of the soil”. At the time, Ramaphosa was up against erstwhile African Union Commission chair Nkosazana-Dlamini Zuma for the party’s plum job.
The Citizen previously reported that several ANC Limpopo provincial executive committee members were accused of plotting to axe Mathabatha. This was revealed by the ANC Youth League in the Vhembe region.
Those said to have attended the clandestine meetings were Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoal- edi, Deputy Health Minister Joe Phaahla, Limpopo provincial treasury MEC Seaparo Sekoati and ANC provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane, among many other national and provincial party leaders. Lekganyane and Motsoaledi denied the allegations.
But Mathabatha apparently told the NEC at the weekend he knew the venue where such meetings were held and the names of the comrades sowing divisions within Ramaphosa’s camp. “I can organise a meeting with the top five and mention those comrades by name and the meetings they convened in the province where some of us were vilified.”
Mathabatha was not available for comment at the time of going to press.