With just over a month until the elections, former president Kgalema Motlanthe lashed out at the ruling party, saying it was in a far worse state than it was before the 2017 Nasrec conference where it elected president Cyril Ramaphosa.
In an interview with the Sunday Times published yesterday, he said he was worried about the country’s future. He cast doubt on whether Ramaphosa is the right man to lead the country out of its “poor” state. He also called the ANC’s list of potential MPs “weak”, saying it “did not inspire confidence”, adding “the ANC needs a surgical overhaul from where it is now” and that it will have to lose power for it to renew itself.
“The ANC is not in great shape,” Motlanthe told the newspaper. “I don’t believe in messianic figures. I believe that first and foremost we’ve got to have a capable state,” added Motlanthe. “Because governments – when you refer to a head of state – [they] come and go. Every five years, theoretically, each time we go to elections, we may end up with a different government. But your state has got to remain stable [and] capable, with institutional memory.”
The former president said the ruling party should open up its parliamentary list to people from all walks of life, ban individuals implicated in corruption and arrest those guilty of serious crimes.
This, in turn, would inspire confidence in the people. A number of ANC officials, including the top six, have been linked to corruption at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.
The ANC has denied its involvement and has asked to cross-examine some of the witnesses.
The ANC would be silly to ignore Motlanthe’s advice, though. Failure to listen to him could hurt them at the polls on May 8.