Apart from his body language – fidgety and uncomfortable – it was Ace Magashule’s own words in his interview with eNCA that left the impression there must have been some fire in the smoke of newspaper reports about a meeting between him and former president Jacob Zuma where there was plotting to oust President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Magashule, in detailing the meeting in Durban last week, repeatedly referred to Zuma as “president”. It could be a mere slip of the tongue – although one would expect the secretary-general of the ANC to be extra cautious when speaking on the record – but it may have also reflected his subconscious feeling that Zuma should still be ANC leader and head of state.
Magashule’s explanation that he had reported the meeting to the ANC national executive committee only after it happened (and thereby admitting he had not let the body know in advance) lends credence to the suspicion that something fishy was going on behind those closed doors in KZN.
Yet, Magashule has continued to bluster, threatening to go to the media ombudsman over the stories because they are, he claims, false.
None of what Magashule said was at all convincing. Ramaphosa, clearly, needs to watch his political back.