Picture: Sthembiso Sithole/The Star

Mahikeng - A PEC meeting which Supra Mahumapelo is chairing was disrupted for a few minutes after ANC Bokone Bophirima supporters demanded that he address them.  

The Ngaka Modiri Molema Region has vowed not to vote for the ruling party in the upcoming election if Mahumapelo is not the premier. 

Standing on top of a huge stone under a tree, Mahumapelo asked supporters to give the PEC some time.

"I am requesting you give us the opportunity for me to address the PEC, then the whole PEC will address you.

"When I am done with the PEC meeting that I am chairing, I will come out and address you and give you the outcome.

Mahumapelo admitted that he doesn't agree with "the things that are going on. It is just we want stability." 

Earlier, ANC supporter, Peter Padi told The Star at the Embassy where the PEC is currently underway that Mahumapelo is treated unfairly. 

"It is not fair for our Premier. The ANC should have left him. Only a few months are left. We are sober members of the ANC. We are sending a strong message that if Supra is not the premier, we will by vote for the ANC next year," said Pedi.

ANC Regional Deputy Chairperson and Elections Coordination Oabile Seabelo said they plan to reject Supra Mahumapelo's resignation. 

"We have heard in the media that the premier will be resigning today. There were invitations for us to come.  

What we are saying, we need to be properly to be told why he is going. If it is corruption, he is not alone. Is he resigning because of the revolution of the council? Or is it the protests. We are not accepting his resignation," said Seabelo. 

Scores of ANC supporters from Bokone Bophirima Ward 11 were singing outside the venue where a PEC is held. 

Mahumapelo on Tuesday said the ANC PEC has asked him to put his plans to publicly resign on hold as a meeting is underway to discuss the matter. 

Confusion had swept through the province on Wednesday morning following Mahumapelo's confirmation on Tuesday night that he would publicly confirm his resignation on Wednesday at a media briefing.

But late on Tuesday evening his office had issued a statement cancelling the briefing. Talks of Mahumapelo handing in his resignation to the Speaker of the provincial legislature Suzan Dantjie, had already started spreading. 

The PEC had called for a meeting with Mahumapelo to discuss the matter of his resignation as he had apparently not informed it of his plans to resign. 

Mahumapelo confirmed that he had been asked to put on hold his plans to make any public announcement until the PEC meeting had taken place. 

The Premier said he would take direction on what happens next from the PEC and that they would announce the way forward.

 What caused even more confusion was that the North West ANC had issued a statement on Tuesday evening welcoming Mahumapelo's resignation. 

"I will listen to what the PEC says. I have been asked to put everything on hold until the meeting. There is a PEC that going to sit, we must wait for the PEC meeting and they themselves will pronounce on the decision," said Mahumapelo. 

The North West province has been marred by widespread protests by residents calling for Mahumapelo to be recalled. 

Allegations of corruption and maladministration in the province have been quoted as the reason for the protests. 

Mahumapelo has been seen as a close ally of former president Jacob Zuma and having links to the controversial Gupta family. 

The health department in the province awarded a multi-million rands contract to a company linked to the family. The company was paid R30 without having done any work. 

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Cabinet has placed the province’s health department and the provincial treasury under administration of the national government.

Conspiracy allegations 

On Wednesday ahead of the meeting with the PEC in the province, Mahumapelo said he still believed there was a manufactured campaign to remove him. 

He accused the EFF and some ANC members of being behind the protests and questioned why the ANC leadership is unwilling to interrogate the possibility of political interference. 

"Yes, it does (continue to be a political conspiracy). The ANC has a majority in the legislature with 22 seats, the opposition combined is 10 seats. Why should there be a panic that any of us would be removed from the legislature? Why? So, something is not right in the ANC, but its finding expression in the EFF," said Mahumapelo. 

The EFF had previously called for a motion of no confidence in Mahumapelo, but the motion was cancelled as the party wanted to peruse a court action to force the vote to be held via secret ballot. 

Mahumapelo said he was concerned that there might be a working relationship between some ANC members and the EFF. 

"The EFF have said so publicly that they have members of the ANC who are supporting them. Now the question will be why is the leadership of the ANC not interested in that? Why is it not an issue? Why is it not been take serious, that particular matter?," he asked.

This is a developing story. 


The Star and Political Bureau