Already plagued by factionalism, the ANC has been forced to admit it is concerned about Jacob Zuma’s explosive allegations involving senior party members at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture yesterday.
Zuma made the damning, but untested allegation that two ANC leaders, Ngoako Ramatlhodi and Siphiwe Nyanda, had been spies for the apartheid government.
Making the allegation that Ramatlhodi had been a spy, Zuma told the commission: “I have been provoked to the last degree.”
He claimed to have lists of those who worked with the apartheid government and said it was necessary to expose the “behaviour of people”.
Zuma asked: “What made comrade Ngoako behave the way he did here, saying I have auctioned the country?
“He’s carrying out an instruction. He was recruited to become a spy when he was a student in Lesotho.”
Despite this, Zuma claimed he had thought [at an earlier time] that Ramatlhodi would change.
The ANC conceded it was concerned about the allegations and would soon discuss it.
Yesterday, on the sidelines of the commission, ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule said Zuma last week informed party leadership at the national headquarters that he would be appearing before Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo and would be “saying certain things that will not sit well with the ANC”.
Magashule added: “These claims are serious and we cannot ignore them.
“While I do not want to discuss the credence of the spy claims, we have to remember that comrade Zuma was ANC chief of intelligence and I know [of] some of the things that he is saying.
“Due to his position in exile, there are things that he knows which we did not know.
“Things have been said about all individuals in the ANC and I am not sure why a big issue has been made when there are things said about certain people.
“I want to confirm the ANC NEC [national executive committee] will soon be discussing the spy claims.”
In what is seen as Zuma’s fightback strategy in retaliation to evidence his opponents in the ANC gave to the commission exposing his vulnerability to the Gupta family, who were involved in widespread graft during his tenure as head of state, he also made the startling claim that Nyanda “collaborated with the enemy”.
Among the testimony that irked Zuma was Ramatlhodi’s evidence to the inquiry linking him to the illegal landing at Air Force Base Waterkloof in 2013 of a Jet Airways chartered plane. It was carrying 200 guests from India to attend a Gupta family wedding at Sun City.