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Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe has moved swiftly to dismiss suggestions that he is gearing up to challenge President Jacob Zuma for the party leadership at the ANC’s elective conference in Mangaung next year.
Shortly before Motlanthe left on a five-day holiday, his office issued a statement on Monday saying he was “concerned by media reports suggesting that he is canvassing for election as president of the ANC”.
“The deputy president’s office wishes to state categorically that Deputy President Motlanthe, as a loyal and disciplined member of the ANC who respects its internal democratic processes, is not involved in any campaigning or lobbying for the presidency of the ANC and he has not spoken to anyone about his future role in the ANC.”
Motlanthe’s spokesman, Thabo Masebe, said the deputy president was more concerned about doing his job well.
His future role in the ANC would be determined at the party conference, when his term as party deputy president expired.
Notably, the statement stopped short of saying Motlanthe would not challenge Zuma for the job.
The Sunday Independent, citing a close aide of Motlanthe, reported that the deputy president had “clandestinely indicated that he is available to take over” from Zuma “should any group in the ANC prove it has drummed up a groundswell of support” for such a challenge.
The report said the “top aide” to Motlanthe had described the relationship between Zuma and his deputy as being “at its lowest” ebb, that Zuma “feels threatened by continued political rumours about his removal” and that Motlanthe would involve himself in the succession discussion only once a decision had been taken about whether Zuma should be replaced.
Earlier this year, newspapers reported that a crime intelligence document had alleged that a number of senior ANC members were involved in a “plot” to oust Zuma.
The document, compiled by police intelligence boss Richard Mdluli - who has since been arrested on charges relating to a murder 12 years ago - named ANC national executive committee (NEC) members Tokyo Sexwale, Billy Masetlha, Jeff Radebe, Mathews Phosa, Cassel Mathale, Julius Malema, Paul Mashatile, Tony Yengeni and others as being part of the purported conspiracy.
The ANC dismissed the allegations as “baseless” and “very misleading”, but it is understood the intelligence document sent shock waves through the party.
Sexwale, who was named as the leader of the group, strongly denied the allegations and offered to invest some of his considerable personal wealth in investigating the origins and purpose of the Mdluli document.
Past ANC succession battles have drawn in organs of state, including elements of the security and intelligence establishment.
In April 2001, Zuma, who was then deputy president to Thabo Mbeki, issued an unsolicited statement saying that he had no plans to challenge Mbeki for the party leadership.
The “plot” allegations have come 10 years to the month that the then-minister of safety and security, Steve Tshwete, made the allegation – later discredited – that three senior ANC members, Sexwale, Phosa and Cyril Ramaphosa, were plotting to oust Mbeki.
Then, as now, the allegations emanated from the security establishment.
In January 2007, as the battle was hotting up to gain control of the party at its conference at the end of that year, then-deputy president Zuma issued a statement in which he denied reports that said he and Sexwale had met to discuss Sexwale’s possible candidacy for the party’s top job.
Zuma went on to be elected leader of the ANC. - Political Bureau
Under any normal circumstance, there is no way the deputy president could accept such utterance by the media at this early stage. For the sake of democracy,it is good and healthy to express his views though at this hour it might tone ANC into pieces and un-governable. As much as the people of South Africa might try to respect the views of the Deputy or the writer of this expression, it is also important to mention that only such sensitive issues and views should not be chanelled through the public media but through proper party protocols as the Polokwane one which pushed Cde Mbeki out of the ring.Again i'ts not good to compare Cde Zuma and Cde Montlanthe . The two bears two different names,voices,characters,surnames and intersets and by that there is absolutely no way they can act equally. ANC should stop creating some divisions but instead should be united and build and strengthern the party rather than weakening it . Some people are interested in destroying ANC from within.United you stand and devided you fall.
One has to laugh at Masocha Mathe blaming 'the media' for the story when it's obvious that the story comes from ANC figures positioning themselves ahead of the party's conference. As they all claim to be 'disciplined members of the ANC' they deny campaigning but resort to briefing the media anonymously. The real outrage here, is how they use state resources to spy on each other at the tax-payers' expense.
Masocha Mathe, wrote
In light of all these, I would like to ask my fellow South Africans to take a moment to consider the role of the media. Some elements of the media abuse the Freedom of Press and Expression. They are actually happy to distabilize the country just for fun. I agree that our Deputy President, a respectably man, cannot do what the Sunday Independant has reported. It is just hearsay. How shall we put up with such stupidity? I call for the instatement of the Protection of Information law for the good of the country. Le there be a media tribunal that will see to it that news men and women are held accountable. The media is an important institution, which if left in the hands of careless people, can harm a country. And if used in a proper manner can aid in building the country. May our South Africa Media join the rest of the South Africans in building this country. If you ask me, I would say that patriotism, or even nationalism, in the context of the broader and diverse South Africans, is not a bad thing. We must all get in together to build a South Africa whci will be a pride of all of us. It would seem as if 90% of the News Media in South Africa operates as the Papparazi. They behave as if they have another country to which they belong, beside South Africa. Please if one does not wish to live in South Africa anymore, they are free to leave. But they must not destroy our country which is loved by all including most of the media people. If the media is not responsible, then it call for the government to do something about. And that is actually the role of a proper government. There must be rules by the government and observation of those rules by the people. Stop speculating and let the ANC do its things as it usually do. Please, leave the Deputy President alone. And also let the President do his job, and if he is not fit, the ANC shall deal with that.
Much better choice. This man has class. I will pray for him to become our President.
Montlantle is the right candidate for president, looking foward to that day.Viva Motlantle Via
Wot seed is iol planting, let him anounce that he is in the running, then make it news, is there nothing else out there to write about, i suppose not judging by the kate moss article, really now! maybe i should read the news on NEWS24's website
Ali not surprised here!, wrote
What is news here, nothing at all! The newspapers do this all the time, besides what's wrong with a cadre of Motlhante's calibre wanting a top job, if he sees fit, and thinks that he can beat the incumbent with his support? Mkhuluwa is a well-mannered gentleman, unlikely to stage a coup like this! The media is always speculating..! Hands off both the President and Deputy President! We should be hearing about what is happening at SABC with the new " Acting Group CEo" in Phil Molefe having replaced Mr Robin Nicholson - that would be the news worth reporting on, telling the nation what is the future of the public national broadcaster...is there a crisis or what?
Mr MOTLANTE deserves to be our future president, and as a disciplined member of the ANC he deserves a certain respect,I would like to warn those people with big mounths to stop misinterpreting him they should treat him with due respect that he deserves.
I would certainly have more confidence in Motlanthe as president than Jacob Zuma.
Not a bad idea realizing that Chomee needs a full time dancer and a Bozo to entertain her fans. Job creation at its best
misquoted - this is the favourite term used.
Of course Motlanthe would deny such reports, First and foremost I do not trust Sunday Independent this is the very same newspaper that insuniated that the Acting president Motlanthe had an affair with a lady and were left with an egg on their face after it was discovered that story was manufactured. Now Sunday Independent is at again talking about Motlanthe's "top aide", I know that Mr Motlanthe is a calculative, strategic cadre who will not associate himself with the so called "Top aide" who will declare Motlanthe's candidancy nogal to Sunday Independent.
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