The ANC in the Western Cape wants a probe into President Jacob Zuma’s cabinet reshuffle and condemns 'attacks' on Derek Hanekom and Barbara Hogan. Picture: David Ritchie
Cape Town – The ANC in the Western Cape wants a probe into President Jacob Zuma’s reshuffling of the cabinet and has denounced “the racist undertones” in the criticism levelled against former cabinet ministers Derek Hanekom and Barbara Hogan.

It wants a special meeting of the national executive committee to be held urgently and for the party’s Integrity Commission to probe Zuma’s conduct.

This was decided by the provincial executive committee (PEC) of the ANC at an ordinary scheduled meeting at the weekend.

Provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs said: “The PEC discussed the recent cabinet reshuffle, the responses of various national officials, the statement following the extended national working committee (NWC) meeting, the developments around and the sentiments expressed at memorial services of Isithwalandwe/Seaparankoe, Comrade Ahmed Kathrada, the downgrades by international rating agencies Standard and Poor’s and Fitch, the calls for the resignation of the president of the ANC, as head of state and the anti-Zuma protests on Friday at length."

“The PEC wishes to reaffirm the president’s right to make changes to the national executive, but also wishes to reiterate the NWC’s stance that such reshuffling should be done in consultation with the leadership."

“The PEC is of the opinion that the Integrity Commission is the best internal instrument to investigate the conduct of the president and to make recommendations in this regard."

“The PEC appreciates the work done by the Integrity Commission already and expresses our support for the Integrity Commission’s investigation and work until now."

“The PEC calls for an urgent special meeting of the national executive committee (NEC), the highest organ of the ANC between national conferences, to discuss the report of the NWC and to conclude on this matter.”

Jacobs said the PEC was also “extremely concerned” about the recent spate of personal attacks by NEC members on their colleagues, as well as the attacks by cabinet ministers on their colleagues.

They called on such members and cabinet ministers to desist from such conduct, as it did not bode well for the unity or integrity of the organisation.

“We also condemn the attacks on Comrade Derek Hanekom, the convener of NEC deployees to the Western Cape, and Comrade Barbara Hogan, the widow of the late Comrade Kathrada, in particular the racist undertones of these attacks on these former political prisoners.”

The ANC in the province was also intent on rooting out indiscipline, he said.

“The PEC was also concerned about ANC members in the province who use social media to attack each other, promote factionalism, divide the ANC, undermine the authority of the ANC, sow racism and political intolerance, make utterances which have the potential to bring the ANC into disrepute and promote their (ANC presidential) preferences when the NEC has not yet announced the succession debate open."

“While the ANC does not have a social media policy, Rule 25.17 is clear on what constitutes acts of misconduct, and the ANC will not hesitate to act in such cases."

“We call on all members and supporters to apply caution when engaging with each other on social media and to, instead of dividing the ANC, use these platforms to unite and strengthen the ANC.”

On the state of the organisation in the Western Cape, Jacobs added: “The PEC received a preliminary pre-audit on membership and the number of branches in good standing in preparation for the policy conference."

“These numbers do not include renewal of membership during the last six months."

“According to the report, membership numbers have declined during the last five years and the PEC agreed to launch a campaign to address the state of membership and call on anyone who wishes to join the ANC, to get in touch with the local branch and to report any incident of gatekeeping to the PEC.”

He also slammed Premier Helen Zille.

“The PEC again reiterated our strong condemnation of the recent praise for colonialism and its ‘benefits’ by a leader of the DA, who is also the premier."

“We fear that if such utterances are allowed and not condemned strongly, it would open the floodgates for the justification of many other horrors and atrocities of the past and this cannot be allowed.”

Cape Times