Mbalula confirms ANC has received Mbeki’s letter addressed to Mashatile, regrets its leaking

ANC secretary general Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

ANC secretary general Fikile Mbalula. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Mar 30, 2023


Durban - ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula has confirmed that the governing party has received a scathing letter written by former president Thabo Mbeki.

According to Mbalula, the ANC, however, finds it regrettable the letter has been leaked.

Mbalula was addressing the media on Thursday at Luthuli House following Monday’s meeting of the ANC’s national working committee (NWC)

He stressed that people should not be alarmed, as it's not the first time a letter has been written.

Mbalula also said the matters raised in Mbeki’s letter are of great value and importance for the survival of the ANC.

“On the letter by former president Thabo Mbeki, the ANC finds it regrettable that the letter from former president Thabo Mbeki directed at national officials has made it to the public domain through a leak.

“The national officials will discuss the letter and seek an audience with the former president, it is only then that the ANC will consider a commentary on the contents of the letter and discussions with former president Mbeki.

“This is not the first letter, there are a number of letters that former presidents have written and the modus operandi has been the same.

“We don’t intend to run the organisation through letters, political matters must be ventilated and be engaged upon openly with the leadership.

“President Mbeki is our veteran and when he raises his views and concerns we have to listen and we also have to give him our side of the story,” he said.

He further added: “There is no need for anyone to get into an altercation because of something that for a good purpose, was sent to the national officials, but somehow was leaked on social media on WhatsApp groups. There will be temptations from some within our ranks to seek to respond to the contents of the letter.

“We call upon our members, leaders, rank and file to exercise restraint and allow national officials and NEC to engage with this content of the latter.”

Mbalula also added that Mbeki raised important issues in his letter.

“The issues that comrade Mbeki is (raising) are important for the discourse within our society and in our own organisation.

“So, we will engage with the former president in all the matters that he has raised,” Mbalula told the media on Thursday.

In the letter which started doing the rounds late on Wednesday, Mbeki raised several concerns, including how the ANC was handling the issue of Phala Phala which has entangled President Cyril Ramaphosa for almost a year now after former spy boss, Arthur Fraser dropped the bombshell.

Mbeki likened the scandal to Nkandlagate which entangled former president Jacob Zuma, and the ANC was found to have used its majority in parliament to try and shield him from accountability.

“As you know, the 3-person Panel appointed by Parliament concerning the Phala Phala matter decided that the Comrade President 'had a case to answer' with regard to a process of impeachment.

“What should have followed this is that the National Assembly would have appointed a Multi-Party Committee (MPC) precisely to investigate the matter of whether the Comrade President did indeed have a case to answer!

“To conclude its work, however long this took, the MPC would approach the National Assembly to recommend whether the President should be impeached or not,” Mbeki wrote in the letter.

He added that the conduct of the ANC in parliament implied that the party has something to hide.

“The way we voted on 13 December 2022 to block the process of the formation of an MPC communicated the unequivocal statement to the masses of the people that we do not want Parliament to seek and gain a deeper and comprehensive understanding of the Phala Phala matter.

“In other words, we acted as we did because there is something to hide!” Mbeki further charged in the letter.

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