President Zuma informed SACP and ANC leaders that he was in possession of an intelligence report and had faith in its contents, said an SACP head. Picture: Itumeleng English
Durban – Not only did President Jacob Zuma inform SACP and ANC leaders that he was in possession of an intelligence report which he used to fire Pravin Gordhan, he had also expressed faith in its contents.

This is according to SACP second deputy general secretary, Solly Mapaila, who on Thursday confirmed that he was present at a meeting in which Zuma spoke of the report as a basis for his decision to axe Gordhan and his deputy, Mcebisi Jonas.

Mapaila was speaking on the sidelines of the SA Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) provincial conference in Greyville, Durban.

Mapaila said the SACP had cross-questioned Zuma about the report and pleaded with him to first investigate its source and authenticity before making any decisions based on it.

However, Zuma had responded by saying he had faith in the report, Mapaila said, adding that he was shocked this week to learn that Zuma had made an application in court demanding that the DA provide such a report.

“What is fundamental is that he told us as political leadership of the alliance that he had received an intelligence briefing and on this basis he has taken this decision."

“We have to take him on regarding that, because it will be disingenuous of the collective leadership of the alliance who were in that meeting to be treated this way."

“How do we look at him in the face tomorrow?” asked Mapaila.

The DA took Zuma to court in a bid to force him to release the record of his decision to fire Gordhan. Zuma responded by asking that the DA release such a report.

“Of course, these are delaying tactics; the president is a master of delaying tactics but it is within his legal rights,” said Mapaila, referring to Zuma’s latest court application.

The SACP had approached the intelligence inspector general requesting that the source of the purported report be investigated. 

He said while the SACP was concerned about there being judicial overreach, but it felt that such was brought about by the reluctance of politicians to deal with certain issues.

“It is discomforting and unfortunate but it is there because it is invited by us because of our misconduct”.

Addressing the delegates at the conference he reiterated his stance coming short of calling Zuma dishonest.

“How do you expect us to entrust the well-being of the people in your hands when you are not honest.”

He called on alliance members to “rescue the movement” saying this will require a revolution against patronage, money politics and a revolt against impunity for leaders who make reckless decisions.

“If we do not correct ourselves, the masses will remove us from power,” he told the conference.

Mapaila said Zuma was incapable of uniting the ANC, saying it seemed like he “wants to fall with the ANC”.

He said members have to defeat corruption and reverse “the gangsterisation of the movement or we will turn into a fully fledged Mafia state.”

The Mercury