AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER
DRESSED in a short-sleeve golf shirt in ANC colours, Ace Magashule, the ANC secretary-general took a swig of Aloe water, flashed a smile and declared himself stress-free.
On a mission to plant trees in Naledi, Soweto, Magashule said he was not stressed about the fact he has 28 days to step down, in line with the decision of the ANC national executive committee (NEC) that those facing criminal charges must step aside.
“Are you stressed,” asked a reporter.
“What stress,” retorted Magashule.”What’s the stress about…Can you see me (being) stressed.”
The ANC secretary-general revealed that he will start soon with his consultations with veteran leaders of the ANC to discuss the ANC NEC decision. He said he will be meeting with former ANC treasurer-general Mathew Phosa on April 11, followed by former ANC president Jacob Zuma, ex-president Thabo Mbeki and former secretary-general of the ANC and also former president of SA, Kgalema Motlanthe.
Pressed on what he is consulting the former leader about, Magashule evaded the question but gave the clearest indication yet, that he will step down in 28 days. “I am consulting. Don’t worry…Leave matters of the ANC to the ANC. I am not stressed. I am still a member of the ANC, I am secretary general, what else do you want guys. The president has expressed decisions of the NEC. We will abide with the Nasrec resolution (at the ANC’s 54th conference) on fighting crime and corruption. I think there are nine points there. So, it’s fine,” Magashule said.
His answers invited more questions and Magashule remained as slippery as an eel. He was not going to declare on the spot that he will step aside, in line with a resolution he said has his support.
“I agree with the resolutions. I am a loyal and disciplined member of the ANC,” he added, urging reporters to wait until the end of the 30 day period.
Magashule denied knowledge of a move by some of his supporters to collapse the ANC NEC by resigning enmasse. He said he would never leave the ANC. “I will die
Ramaphosa announced on Monday that ANC members facing criminal charges have been given 30 days to step down from the positions within the party, the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC), its highest decision-making body in between conferences.
Ramaphosa said: “All members who have been charged with corruption or other serious crimes must step aside within 30 days, failing which they should be suspended in terms of Rule 25.70 of the ANC constitution. The meeting emphasised that the 30 day period will be to enable the implementation of the decision in line with the guidelines, not to review the decision.
“The NEC also agreed that the provincial chairpersons and secretaries would meet with the national officials during that time to further refine the guidelines to ensure the resolution can be effectively and practically implemented. The secretary general’s office will work with the provinces to identify all people affected and inform them of the decision.
“The NEC welcomed the decision by the ANC Secretary-General Cde Ace Magashule to use this time to seek the counsel of past leaders of the movement. The NEC called on all ANC members to rally around this decision and not to engage in any acts of indiscipline, including through mobilisation or public statements that undermine implementation of the conference resolution.”