Cape Town - Outspoken ANC MP Salam Abram has quit the party, citing “appalling treatment, the denial of a fair and just disciplinary process and abuse of my human rights” resulting from his clashes with Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson.
Abram, a member of the agriculture, forestry and fisheries portfolio committee, is not on the ANC’s parliamentary nomination list for the coming election.
Speaking at the Cape Town Press Club on Wednesday, Abram repeated the allegation that had got him into trouble with the party in October last year. This was when he had interjected “you lie” while Joemat-Pettersson was telling the portfolio committee how he was alleged to have responded to her remarks about Land Bank loans to the congress of Agri SA in October 2012.
Disciplinary measures had immediately been instituted against him, but a charge of bringing the ANC into disrepute was subsequently delayed indefinitely. Last year, chief whip Stone Sizani had told him he would arrange a meeting between Abram and Joemat-Pettersson to resolve the issue amicably, Abram said.
Although this meeting had never happened, Sizani had been quoted in The New Age newspaper as saying he (Abram) had apologised to the minister.
Abram said his confidence in some ANC leaders had been “shattered”. “I wish to reiterate, I did not apologise (to Joemat-Pettersson). I quit the ANC.”