Nowhere to hide for Magashule as Ramaphosa expands his power base

Zukile Majova

All indications suggest that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule will have no choice but to step aside when the 30-day grace period ends on 1 May.

Up until now, Magashule thought he could count on the support of members of the ANC National Executive Committee and provincial secretaries. 

But in recent months, powerful provinces like the Eastern Cape, Gauteng, Mpumalanga and most recently KwaZulu-Natal have backed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s anti-corruption stance.

Ramaphosa is leading efforts to force ANC leaders, who have been charged by the police to protect the integrity of the party, to step down from their positions until cleared by the courts.

Magashule has been implicated in the R250 million asbestos tender saga from the Free State, which dates back to when he was premier. 

In the North West, the noose has tightened around the neck of Magashule’s friend and political ally Supra Mahumapelo, whose membership of the ANC has been suspended by the North West Interim Provincial Committee. Mahumapelo has been accused of staging a rally that was designed to sow divisions in that province. 

Magashule and Mahumapelo are the main supporters of former president Jacob Zuma and the torch bearers of a relentless campaign to undermine Ramaphosa.

Meanwhile, in another dramatic moment in the implementation of the ANC step aside rule, the ANC Gauteng Provincial Disciplinary Committee (PDC) has found suspended presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko guilty of bringing the party into disrepute.

The Committee recommended that Diko should step down from being a member of the ANC Provincial Executive Committee and resign from her job as Ramaphosa’s spokesperson.

Diko and her late husband, AmaBhaca King Madzikane II Thandisizwe Diko, were implicated in a R125 million PPE tender scandal through their company, Royal Bhaca Projects.

But Diko is not taking any of this lying down and has instructed Avela Nontso Attorneys to seek a review of the decision of the PDC by the National Disciplinary Committee.

In a statement, Diko’s lawyers said she had not committed any unethical or unlawful act, and claimed she was a victim of a “political witch-hunt on baseless unsubstantiated media allegations”. 

Picture source: @Magashule_ace


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