Gauteng ANC insiders yesterday told The Citizen that the provincial leadership was against the retention of Mokonyane. A provincial party leader, who asked to remain anonymous, said Mokonyane’s re-appointment would indicate a blatant disregard of the candidate list .
“We made our own choice but it seems Zuma wants to betray us,” said the leader.
Another leader, who also asked not to be identified, said Mokonyane’s notorious “dirty votes” comment to residents of Bekkersdal during the election campaign had cost the party support.
“It would have been very stupid of us to want the same person to become the premier of this province again,” said the source.
The Citizen understands that Mokonyane enjoys the backing of the ANC’s national working committee (NWC) for the Gauteng premiership. The NWC is expected to deliberate on the premiership appointment today.
The Gauteng ANC nominated party secretary David Makhura as its top candidate for the position. However, Zuma is likely to snub the province’s choice in favour of Mokonyane, a long-time ally. She publicly backed him in the run-up to the ANC’s 53rd national conference.
Tensions between Zuma and the province were highlighted when it nominated Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe for the presidential position of the ruling party before the election.
Gauteng ANC spokesperson Nkenke Kekana declined to comment on whether Mokonyane’s reappointment could widen tensions between Zuma and provincial party structures.