| ‘You attack Ace Magashule, you attack us’ – supporters during march to Zondo commission | ‘You attack Ace Magashule, you attack us’ – supporters during march to Zondo commission
  • ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule’s supporters are calling for an urgent national general council meeting.
  • The NGC meeting was postponed when the country went into lockdown.
  • The supporters are protesting at the Zondo commission, accusing it of a politically motivated attack on former president Jacob Zuma.

The ANC has no excuse for delaying a national general council (NGC) meeting, one of the organisers of the “Hands off Ace Magashule” campaign and ANC member of Parliament Thabo Mmutle told News24.

A fleet of cars are currently moving towards the Zondo commission to protest what they say is a “politically motivated attack” on former president Jacob Zuma and ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule.

The protest was organised shortly after reports emerged this week that an alleged warrant of arrest would be executed against Magashule. The Hawks have denied the existence of such a warrant.

Mmutle, one of the chief organisers and a former ANC Youth League national executive committee (NEC) member, said they were marching towards the commission of inquiry on state capture to protest against the manner in which Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo was “playing politics”.

He said: 

Secondly we are here in support of the ANC SG (secretary-general) because we feel that there are politics in place. The Hawks is orchestrating charges which are frivolous against secretary-general [Magashule] and we know that there are politics at play which speak to that. They want to arrest Ace so that they can tell him to step aside so that they can capture the ANC.

Mmutle added that some within the ANC NEC were negotiating the implementation of the Nasrec resolution, threatening the ANC’s goal of delivering economic freedom for poor South Africans.

READ | Zuma won’t attend State Capture Commission until biased Zondo is recused

These resolutions include the nationalisation of the SA Reserve Bank and land expropriation without compensation.

Mmutle denied that Magashule had any knowledge of the protest, saying they did not have to get his approval.

“It’s not necessary for him to know. He doesn’t have to approve. He is the one who is under attack. You attack Magashule, you attack us. Watch!” he said.

The Magashule and Zuma supporters, commonly known as the radical economic transformation (RET) forces, are also calling for the NGC to be held urgently. The ANC cancelled all its planned conferences, including its mid-term NGC after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a national state of disaster in March.

The NGC is seen by the warring factions as the battlefront with the faction against Ramaphosa, eyeing the NGC as its opportunity to deliver a fatal blow to Ramaphosa and his supporters.

There has been growing discontent within the ANC over the party’s inability implement several of its resolutions taken at its 54th national conference in December 2017, in Nasrec.

“There is no excuse for the delay on the NGC. We are at Level 1 now. The ANC must be able to some extent to continue with its programme. We want to gauge what is the problem in terms of implementing or how far they are in implementing resolutions taken in Nasrec,” Mmutle said.

ALSO READ | Magashule lawyer, Hawks know nothing about ‘warrant of arrest

In September, News24 reported that Zuma’s lawyers wrote to Zondo, asking him to recuse himself due to his “biased disposition” towards the former leader.

In a letter drafted by his legal team, Mabuza Attorneys, Zuma states that he is of the view that he has been “targeted” by the commission of inquiry.

This followed an ultimatum by Zondo earlier this month, when he announced before proceedings at the commission that the new, non-negotiable dates for Zuma’s appearance to give evidence would be 16 to 20 November.

He said that, on 9 October at 09:00, the commission would hear an application brought by its legal team for an order authorising the issuing of a summons.

Efforts to reach ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe were unsuccessful. His comments will be added in due course.

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