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Sisulu regrets leak of letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa, but he must still answer

Member of the ruling party’s National Executive Council and Tourism Minister Lindiwe Sisulu regretted the leaking of her letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa but still demanded he responds. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Member of the ruling party’s National Executive Council and Tourism Minister Lindiwe Sisulu regretted the leaking of her letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa but still demanded he responds. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

Published May 10, 2022

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Durban - Member of the ruling party’s National Executive Council and Tourism Minister Lindiwe Sisulu regretted the leaking of her letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa but still demanded he responds.

Sisulu wrote a letter asking Ramaphosa to “look into allegations made about the formation of the Congress of the People (Cope) and ANC veteran Trevor Manuel, former minister of finance Tito Mboweni, current Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana, and former president Thabo Mbeki who were alleged to be instrumental in the creation of the party.

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“It’s regrettable that a letter that was hand-delivered was leaked. Anyway, Minister Sisulu is awaiting a response from the President,” said Sisulu’s spokesperson, Steve Motale.

The ANC’s head of presidency, Sibongile Besani, said the letter should be received formally and processed so that a decision would be taken.

“As a matter of principle, the ANC had always investigated its leaders who are accused of forming other political parties. The ANC did so with regards to suspended secretary-general (Ace Magashule) when it was alleged that he was part of founding the ATM in around 2019,” said Besani.

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Cope on Monday defended Mbeki, Manuel, Mboweni, and Godongwana, and refuted claims that they were members or advisers of Cope.

“It was no secret that former president Thabo Mbeki’s late mother, Epainette Nomaka Mbeki, was a card-carrying member of Cope after she resigned from the ANC. She was a very proud member of Cope.

“We want to put the record straight. The allegations reported in the media that former president Thabo Mbeki was a member or adviser of Cope are nothing but malice. Those allegations are far from the truth. We want to put it categorically clear that former president Mbeki was never a member or an adviser of Cope.

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“It is further alleged that Mr Trevor Manuel, Mr Tito Mboweni, and Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana were also involved in the formation of Cope, and funded the party in the background. This is all utter nonsense,” said Cope spokesperson Dennis Bloem.

In a swipe directed at Sisulu, the party said those who wanted to campaign for top positions, must find better ways than spreading malicious rumours. Bloem also urged all those who made the allegations to come to the fore with proof.

In her letter, Sisulu said she was worried that some of the names Dr JJ Tabane mentioned via his YouTube show, The Hustler’s Corner, as being behind the formation of Cope were still members in good standing of the ANC and sitting on the highest decision making bodies of the movement.

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“Such inaction on the part of the party leadership breeds an indisputable culture of impunity, self-destruction, and anarchy, which to all intents and purposes constitute a recipe for the demise of the ANC,” she said.

She added: “This has a potential to destroy the ANC which prides itself as a disciplined force.

“Against this backdrop, I, as a member of the NEC, National Working Committee, ANC Women’s League … draw your attention to the phenomena and given currency and new urgency by Dr Tabane’s interview,” she said.

Sisulu is one of the ANC leaders eyeing the ANC president post ahead of the elective conference in December.

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