Former Limpopo premier Cassel Mathale has come out in support of chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, saying she has a right to contest for any position in the ANC.
This could be seen as a clear indication that Mathale – EFF leader Julius Malema’s political mentor – is in favour of Dlamini-Zuma taking over the reins as ANC leader next year.
Mathale told ANC supporters at the party’s Tsietsi Mashinini branch Siyanqoba rally in Seshego, outside Polokwane, that the ANC deployed Dlamini-Zuma to lead the AU.
“She is a member in good standing, like any other member of the ANC,” Mathale said.
“She has a right to be available to serve the movement at whatever level.”
The ANC Women’s League and ANC Youth League supports Dlamini-Zuma to succeed her former husband President Jacob Zuma.
When The Citizen asked Mathale about the ANC’s leadership tradition that the deputy president become the automatic choice for president, Mathale replied: “There is no such tradition in the ANC. In the ANC we have a constitution and we have got policy documents. All we have is the leadership that is there and serving us. It will take us to conference.”
Mathale decried the fact that the ANC had failed to implement the party’s 2012 elective conference in Mangaung, a decision that the government should push ahead with radical economic transformation.
“We went to Mangaung and said radical economic transformation,” he said.
“Next year we are going to another conference; what will we show, because there is nothing to show. Where is the radical economic transformation?”
Mathale called on the ANC-led government to do things properly.
“We should not wait for people to toyi-toyi before we give them water,” Mathale said.
“We should not wait for people to toyi-toyi before we fix roads.”
Mathale said the challenge facing the ANC was the high rate of unemployment.
“The problem is that we allow companies and investors to do as they please,” Mathale said. “When we talk we say what will the investors say. If the investors are not helping us to create jobs, why must we worry about them?”
Despite political parties being confident of wresting power from the ANC in powerful metros, including Nelson Mandela Bay and Tshwane, Mathale vowed that the ANC would win next week’s local government elections with a decisive victory.
“You can’t beat the ANC,” he said. “It won’t happen in these elections.”
Mathale said other political parties were not a threat to the ANC.
“The others are just Mickey Mouse organisations,” he said.
The Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans’ Association Limpopo secretary, Jack Lulamile, took a dig at Malema, labelling him a “thief”.
“We are not shy to say that,” Jack said. “We are the people who led the struggle for Julius to be arrested because of his criminal activities.”
Jack called on ANC candidate councillor Steve Mashabela to prioritise people who would vote for him.
“We did not fight for the enemy,” Jack said. “When we fought for freedom, we did not fight for every Tom, Dick and Harry.”
He called for fire on those who cursed Zuma.
On the other hand, the EFF motorcade moved in the streets of the township. The motorcade led by EFF provincial secretary Jossey Buthane driving his German car left the township for Polokwane.
The EFF will host a business gala dinner at Meropa Casino.
Meanwhile, the Pan Africanist Congress also wants a share of the vote in the election. Its members were seen in the Polokwane CBD dishing out pamphlets to the electorate.