President Jacob Zuma’s staunchest supporter, Kebby Maphatsoe, is due to cut a lonely figure when the MKMVA elective conference gets under way. Picture: Dumisani Sibeko/ANA Pictures

Johannesburg – President Jacob Zuma’s staunchest supporter, Kebby Maphatsoe, is due to cut a lonely figure when the elective conference of the uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA), in which he serves as chairperson, gets under way in Joburg on Friday.


This after Maphatsoe’s trusted aides, who are members of the MKMVA’s national executive committee (NEC), said they would not be associated with the conference.


They include Maphatsoe’s deputy Teenage Monama, general secretary Dumisani Nduli and his deputy Tshidiso Paka, and NEC member Ike Moroe.


They said they had it on good authority that about 60% of the more than 700 voting delegates, “do not have ascertainable bona fides as MK military veterans”.


“Given that a huge number of those veterans who have aligned themselves with the MK National Council do not also have any form of representation in the forthcoming MKMVA conference, we hold that it would be incorrect for this conference to be viewed as a constitutional gathering of MKMVA with the powers to elect a new leadership,” the said.


They said they would they would not attend the “unconstitutional gathering” and urged others to do same.


“We wish to disassociate ourselves with that gathering, and believe that many who share the wish and hope of the unity of MK military veterans and the ANC and its alliance do the same,” they said.


The former freedom fighters also trained their guns on the ANC leadership, saying: “We must also strongly express our disappointment with the leadership of the ANC in allowing this conference to take place amidst this cloud of wrongdoing that can only serve to tarnish the name of our movement the ANC with an undesirable factional posture.”


The conference, where Zuma is expected to deliver the keynote address, is held at the Birchwood Hotel in Boksburg, east of Joburg.


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