Tshwarelo Hunter Mogakane
Pretoria - The ANC in Mpumalanga is facing accusations that its processes, if any, allow foreign nationals to easily join the party without being vetted.
This follows the withdrawal of the membership of Philemon Lukhele, an ANC member implicated in the kidnapping, rape and murder of Hillary Gardee. On Sunday night, the ANC announced that Lukhele, who is in jail, was an illegitimate member of the party as he was a citizen of Swaziland.
ANC members close to the matter revealed that the ANC in Mpumalanga was known for allowing foreign nationals to occupy leadership positions. “You don’t have to look far. The first place is the ANC-run government in the province. A number of heads of departments are foreign nationals.
“There was even an MEC accused of being a Mozambican using multiple IDs, but protected by the ANC that deployed him,” said one ANC insider who asked not to be named for fear of reprisal.
The ANC member named former MEC of finance Pat Ngomane, reshuffled before the recent provincial ANC conference. In 2019, the EFF leadership in Mpumalanga questioned Ngomane’s legitimacy to assume office as an ANC deployee, stating in the provincial legislature that he was an illegal immigrant.
Yesterday, Ngomane told the Pretoria News that he was a legitimate South African. “I was born in South Africa at Phola Village (near Hazyview).”
Ngomane, who withdrew his challenge for ANC provincial chairperson before the April elective conference, said he could not deny his origins were in Mozambique. “My grandparents are Mozambican, but that doesn’t mean I was not born in South Africa. My ID proves that I am South African.”
Mpumalanga EFF leader Collen Sedibe dismissed Ngomane’s insistence that he was born in South Africa. “The EFF saw the Home Affairs records showing Ngomane had multiple IDs.”
He accused Ngomane of using his status as a provincial government leader
to erase all the damning files at Home Affairs. “They cleaned up the evidence very fast.” However, Sedibe stressed: “The EFF is for the unity of Africans. All foreigners are welcome, as long as they have proper documentation.”
The ANC in Mpumalanga failed to answer questions about its vetting systems, or if Ngomane had been vetted.