ANC provincial secretary in KwaZulu-Natal Bheki Mtolo says they are unperturbed that Zandile Gumede will be campaigning for the party ahead of the elections.
Mtolo said while Gumede was ordered by the ANC to step aside in 2021, after being charged with corruption, she will be campaigning for the party.
He said the step-aside resolution does not prevent her from campaigning. However, she is barred from taking part in ANC meetings where decisions are taken, said Mtolo.
It was not the first time that Gumede would be on the campaign trail for the ANC, said Mtolo, adding that she was involved in another campaign with ANC national chairperson Gwede Mantashe and NEC member Zizi Kodwa in November last year.
Gumede was seen over the weekend with ANC leaders.
Mtolo said there was nothing wrong with Gumede getting involved in the campaign, as she was not expelled but was ordered to step aside after charges were filed against her.
He added that Gumede is a member of the ANC who is in good standing but was asked to step aside.
" It’s impossible to say, ‘Hey Zandile, don’t tell people to vote for the ANC’. How do you do that? It’s impossible," Mtolo said.
"She has a constitutional obligation to tell the people to vote for the ANC. She doesn’t go to meetings. She just goes to the campaigns and all that. It’s not true that she first appeared (in public) when she was with me and Fikile Mbalula (ANC Secretary-General). She first appeared with Mantashe on November 18 and 19. On the 18th, she was with Mantashe, and on the 19th, she was with Zizi,” said Mtolo.
He added that Gumede was also a popular leader in the region, and the ANC would not be able to stop her from campaigning.
Gumede has also not been found guilty by the court. Her matter was still being heard in the High Court.