Speaking for the first time since taking his fight for political survival to court, suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule says he will be vindicated in court.
But it might soon be too late.
Party insiders say that some of Magashule’s internal enemies are planning to call for his expulsion for taking the party to court.
“My suspension is a deliberate ploy to block me from taking part in next year’s ANC elective conference,” Magashule said.
He is fighting to have his suspension with full pay overturned. Magashule will be represented by Advocate Dali Mpofu and the matter will be heard on 1 June.
“Some people are conniving and changing party policies and resolutions as we go along. We cannot allow that to happen,” he said.
Magashule was suspended following the recommendations of two top ANC structures, the National Working Committee (NWC) and the National Executive Committee (NEC).
When he failed to turn the branches of the ANC against rival President Cyril Ramaphosa, Magashule was left with no option but to go to court on Thursday.
While Magashule has not publicly said that he is eyeing the ANC president position, his supporters wanted him to run for the position when the ANC holds its elective conference in December next year.
Magashule is out on R200,000 bail over the dodgy R255 million tender issued during his tenure as the Premier of Free State.
Legal expert Ulrich Roux said the court faced a tough task assessing the argument that Magashule should be treated as innocent until proven guilty.