National 11.8.2016 05:44 pm

We won’t be discussing Zuma’s removal – Mantashe

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe speaks to guests outside The Inanda Club in Johannesburg, 8 October 2014, after his address on 2014 Joburg Indaba on investing in mining and resources. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe speaks to guests outside The Inanda Club in Johannesburg, 8 October 2014, after his address on 2014 Joburg Indaba on investing in mining and resources. Picture: Nigel Sibanda

The ANC secretary-general said if the demand for Zuma to go ‘is done to us’ by opposition parties in coalition talks, they would cross that bridge when they came to it.

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe on Thursday said the election results from the watershed August 3 local government elections were the only agenda item at the four-day meeting of the ANC top leadership structure.

Amid claims that one of the preconditions for the EFF to enter into a coalition with the ANC is that President Jacob Zuma step down, Mantashe said Zuma would not be a topic of discussion by the party’s top brass.

“I will never go to any party and put a condition that you remove your leader,” Mantashe told journalists ahead of the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) meeting in Irene, Pretoria.

“If it is done to us it is an issue that we must deal with in the negotiations.”

“For the four days we will focus on the analysis of the election results. We will look at the implications of a number of issues. For example, in four metros there is no outright winner. That means those metros will be governed through coalitions,” Mantashe told a scrum of reporters in Pretoria.

“We will also look into the fact that there is a strange phenomenon that was clear in these elections. In a number of areas where we have the majority of wards, we ended up being smaller.

“The example is Port Elizabeth where we have 60% of the wards but end up becoming 40% overall. Another example is Johannesburg.”

Mantashe said the governing party was, however, not crying foul about the electoral systems and processes.

“We are asking the question: why is the proportion – which is half of the seats – why is it used on the overall seats? It’s an issue that is open for discussion,” said Mantashe.

“We are not crying foul but we are raising the disadvantages of the system of ensuring that you give space to the smaller parties – rather than being fair and proportionate.

“We are going to have analysis now. We have received three representations on the matter – the analysis, crude facts, where we are in which municipalities.

“We are looking at all the statistics. We will go back to 1994, and come through (analysing) how is our performance; are we in decline; is that a trend that will continue forever; and what we should do to arrest that trend.”

The ANC is currently in high-level negotiations with opposition parties for coalitions in significant metros such as Tshwane, Ekurhuleni and Johannesburg after losing its grip on them in the August 3 polls, falling below 50%.

The governing party also lost out to the Democratic Alliance in the tightly contested Nelson Mandela Bay metro.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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