Mantashe slams 'counter revolutionaries' gunning for Ramaphosa

ANC chairperson Gwede Mantashe has spoken out against an emerging tendency for ANC leaders of wanting to destroy one another in the guise of "cleansing the organisation".

Mantashe was speaking during an online lecture on organisational renewal on Thursday evening in the Sarah Baartman region in the Eastern Cape.

"The new tendencies that are emerging one [sic] is eagerness to destroy one another but using the cover of cleaning the organisation. It has nothing to do with cleaning the organisation. It is a revolution that is beginning to devour its own children. It's very strong in this province," he said.

Mantashe said the second tendency that was creeping into party structures was the ease in which members attack President Cyril Ramaphosa.

"It appears to be a mass movement that is very unhappy with the president and the reality of the matter it is to weaken the pillars of the organisation with the presidency being one of the pillars. It appears revolutionary but if you look closely it's counter revolutionary."

Ramaphosa was at the receiving end of criticism by ANC members after he wrote to party members expressing his disgust over corruption allegations against members and calling for those implicated to step aside.

His most powerful critic was former president Jacob Zuma who wrote to Ramaphosa calling for him to subject himself to scrutiny over his CR17 campaign for ANC presidency.

ALSO SEE: READ: '… Hang your head in shame' – Zuma's scathing letter to Ramaphosa

Andile Lungisa, the former ANC youth league deputy president, also wrote to Ramaphosa calling him to order.

Mantashe said while he was criticised for protecting Zuma during his time as secretary-general, he kept his commitment to protect the office of the president up to the end.

"If a decision is taken in a structure were you serve whether you agree with it or not you never go out and say this is the decision, I disagree with it because that decision is your decision."

Corruption and factional battles

Mantashe also spoke on corruption saying a process to rid the party of corrupt members was under way and beginning to show results.

"ANC members shout why me, because so and so last year was taken to task? We are starting a process and it's going to be very thorough, it's going to deal with practical issues," he said.

ALSO READ: ANC on its way down and taking South Africa with it – MK council

He bemoaned that the party was permanently on conference mode, looking internally while it was beginning to see a realignment of forces.

"People who were working together [are] splitting to different factions because factions by their nature mutate. The mutation of factions is going to create new factions out of a particular faction that was winning in the last conference and we are already working on the next conference," he said, adding that the ANC needs to guard against this.

He said because the ANC was busy fighting internal factional battles, it was failing to exploit the gaps and cracks of the DA which "is cleansing itself of black members".

Mantashe also spoke on a debate in the ANC on its policy document over the deployment of cadres.

Some within the national executive committee are calling for cadre deployment to be based on academic qualification, however, Mantashe said some including himself were arguing that it should be a combination of loyalty and competence.

"There will be comrades of the ANC who never had a luxury of going to school but may be activist in the same right… But as we do that we must not ignore the importance of quality that is the role of academic qualifications," he said.

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