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Only the ANC conference can remove me – Ramaphosa

By Loyiso Sidimba

President Cyril Ramaphosa appeared unfazed by talk of ousting him, saying the only ANC gathering with such powers to axe him was next year’s ANC national conference.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa

Ramaphosa told a gathering to commemorate the third anniversary of Struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s death that he was not worried about claims that there was a move to have him removed in the ruling party.

”NGCs are not about removing or installing anyone.

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“The NGC is about renewing our policies, the implementation and where we are and thereafter we hold our policy conference, and thereafter we hold a leadership electing conference, which is in 2022,” Ramaphosa said.

Earlier this week, following a meeting of the ANC national executive committee (NEC), Ramaphosa announced that it was focusing on uniting the party in a principled manner.

He said the fact that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule was not present at Madikizela-Mandela and her daughter Zindzi Mandela’s commemoration did not mean the governing party was divided.

He said other members of the party’s top leadership structure were also not present at the Fourways Memorial Park in Joburg.

Ramaphosa also addressed his administration’s Covid-19 vaccination programme, assuring the country that it would be sped up.

”The minister of health (Dr Zweli Mkhize) will soon be announcing that now we have signed all the agreements and that we are waiting for delivery and the vaccination programme will now get underway with a great deal of speed,” Ramaphosa said.

He explained that the ANC national executive committee demanded that the vaccination process be sped up.

”That is what the government is going to focus on,” Ramaphosa promised.

At its NEC meeting, the ANC announced that vaccination should be sped up.

Cosatu also accepted the ANC’s decision that all ANC members who are charged with corruption or serious crimes should step aside within 30 days and if they failed they would be suspended from the party.

“This is a positive step in the right direction, but the federation has witnessed a lot of these encouraging steps only to see them falter during the implementation phase.

“Experience has taught us to await the implementation of this decision before making our final assessment of its significance.

“The organisation has attracted an army of vexatious litigants in its ranks who have used the judicial system to undermine organisational discipline and fight factional battles,” the federation warned.

The NEC decision was followed by the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) ruling setting aside the results of the Free State provincial conference in 2018.

The SCA found that the conference which replaced Magashule with Sam Mashinini was unlawful.

According to Cosatu ,the successful implementation of this ANC NEC decision will go a long way in making the governing party a more effective leader of society and a sharp instrument for fundamental change.

“South Africa is challenged with a major crisis of crass materialism and corruption.

“The ANC, as a leader of society, has a responsibility to lead from the front to win this fight and eradicate this cancer, in its ranks, which is destroying the moral fibre of the organisation and also our society,” the federation said. IOL