Matjhabeng - A meeting of the ANC's Lejweleputswa region in the Free State almost descended into chaos as some members wearing T-shirts in support of presidential contenders Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma were told to leave the gathering.
The meeting held at the Ferdi Meyer Hall in Matjhabeng initially began with a low turnout but members packed the hall two hours later.
Before introducing ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe, who was scheduled to address members, the Lejweleputswa region chairman Wilson Speelman instructed those wearing T-shirts to leave the hall.
Mantashe says he's said before: "Let's take Cyril Ramaphosa + Nkosazana-Dlamini, lock them in a room and say, sort this thing out." @IOL
"Comrades, I'm not asking any questions. I'm saying anyone who is wearing T-shirts with NDZ or Cyril must get out of the meeting," said Speelman.
Some member protested up hearing this but Speelman was defiant: "We are still speaking with you in a disciplined manner. If you know you are wearing these T-shirts, please get out. We are not going to allow it comrades, whether you like it or not," he said.
A handful members shouted back to Speelman: "Don't disrespect us."
Mantashe tells branch members: The factions that you love are eating up the ANC like a cancer. You are eating up the ANC. @IOLPolitics@IOL
The Free State, led by premier Ace Magashule, is currently facing woes. Recently two provincial members filed an urgent court application at the Bloemfontein High Court in a bid to have the Provincial Executive Committee dissolved and Magashule removed as chairperson.
"Four years of Magashule's term has ended. We are going to BGMs. Are we going there with an unconstitutional leadership?," a member asked at the meeting after a handful of individuals were give a chance to ask Mantashe questions.
Mantashe was also taken to task by members regarding his tweets about his views on a women becoming a deputy president of the party.