Ekhurhuleni  Mayor Mzwandile Masina. Picture: Nokuthula Mbatha/African News Agency(ANA)
Ekhurhuleni Mayor Mzwandile Masina. Picture: Nokuthula Mbatha/African News Agency(ANA)

ANC clarifies policy position as Mzwandile Masina calls for nationalising the economy

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Jun 2, 2020

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Johannesburg - Ekurhuleni Mayor Mzwandile Masina seems to have deactivated his Twitter account following a statement from the ANC which rebuked comments he made calling for the nationalisation of the economy.

 Masina had tweeted on Sunday that he was in agreement with EFF leader Julius Malema about the need to collapse the economy.

“I fully agree with my friend on this one @Julius_S_Malema. Until we nationalise all commanding heights of the economy – we need to restart this economy and make sure it favours the majority. This can’t be sane again,” said Masina in agreement.

Malema had called for the economy to come secondary to saving lives. He criticised the government's decision to re-open the economy under level 3 of the risk-adjusted Covid-19 strategy. He said the economy did not benefit the poor.

Masina agreed with this statement on Sunday. His response had distressed the ANC whose spokesperson Pule Mabe sent out a statement on Monday night rebuking Masina's statements. Mabe said the Ekurhuleni's mayor's comments fell outside the ANC's policy position.

"The African National Congress appeals to its members and leadership to be cautious on what gets communicated in the social media. The ANC has always guided its members to limit their public pronouncements to approved policies as there are internal platforms of discourse for engagement on policy positions that have not been approved.

The recent post by the Regional Chairperson of the ANC in Ekurhuleni, Comrade Mzwandile Masina, on nationalisation of the economy falls outside the confines of our policy position. While the views were expressed on a personal account, it stands to confuse our constituency and members as to what the ANC stands for," Mabe said.

The party was concerned that statements made by its leaders on social media could cause policy confusion and have cautioned its members to stick to its structures when they need to express their views.

"It is expected of ANC leaders to act with care and be cautious at all times on matters of policy. Leaders of the ANC feed into the narrative of policy uncertainty when they publicly canvas positions outside the formal structures. We, therefore, encourage members of the ANC to exercise their freedom of speech within the confines of ANC structures," Mabe said.

He pointed to policy resolutions made at the ANC's conference in 2017 as the guiding principals for policy being followed by the government.

These steps include:

  • Uniting government, labour, business and communities in an investment pact;
  • Isolating and rooting out corrupt elements in the public and private sectors;
  • Stabilising the governance and finances of State-Owned Companies (SOC) and ensuring that SOC’s play a developmental role;
  • Ensuring a measured and balanced path of macroeconomic management;
  • Working to avoid further downgrades to South Africa’s credit rating and regain an investment grade;
  • Regulating uncompetitive structures and conduct in the economy;
  • Reviewing and recalibrating the NDP regularly in order to ensure improved implementation.

"We are confident that the current team that has been deployed in government, under the leadership of President Cyril Ramaphosa, will implement our policies as mandated by the national conference," Mabe said.

Malema showed support for Masina saying his "radical views" were not tolerated by the ANC.

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