As anticipation grows around whether the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) will decide that all corruption-accused should step aside, the party’s integrity commission has asked for an audience with secretary-general Ace Magashule over his comments on the matter.
Magashule is on record as saying: “I will never step aside due to corruption allegations.”
In the letter, which News24 has seen, the integrity commission chairperson, George Mashamba, said they wanted Magashule to clarify his statements.
“The integrity commission (IC) of the African National Congress has taken note of the interview that was conducted on 7 July 2020, in which you are alleged to have said, ‘I shall not step aside due to allegations of corruption’,” the letter, which has since been leaked, said.
Mashamba said the integrity commission initially hoped to meet Magashule to discuss the matter on Saturday, but it coincides with the special NEC meeting.
News24 reported that the NEC meeting will dedicate Friday to comb through a list of its leaders and members who have been implicated in corruption.
Supporters of President Cyril Ramaphosa are going into the meeting prepared to argue that those implicated in corruption should resign en masse.
They insist that the “innocent until proven guilty” doctrine is against the party’s resolutions and are prepared to argue that anyone with corruption allegations hanging over their head must face the boot.
Magashule is this week compiling a register of party leaders and members implicated in corruption.
He is expected to present the report to the NEC virtual meeting on Friday.
In a letter on Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa says the ANC and its leaders stand accused of corruption and, while the party may not be alone in the dock, it does stand as “accused number one”.
“This is the stark reality that we must now confront,” Ramaphosa said in a letter penned to ANC members on the recent revelations of Covid-19 corruption that has engulfed the nation.
Ramaphosa said the ANC’s NEC, at its last meeting at the beginning of the month, had recognised the justifiable public outrage caused by recent reports of corruption.
“It said these developments ’cause us collectively to dip our heads in shame and to humble ourselves before the people’. The NEC recognised that it had a clear mandate from the 54th National Conference to deal decisively with corruption and to restore the integrity and values of the ANC. It said this is a responsibility it cannot defer, outsource or avoid,” Ramaphosa said.
Ramaphosa said the lack of discipline and the party’s failure to deal with the issues within the organisation had eroded organisational ethos and standing.
“Over many years, we have seen corruption in the state, in society and in the ANC take several forms. Perhaps the best-known form of corruption is the award of tenders and other contracts to certain companies based on conflictual relations, such as friendships or family connections.
“For these people, success depends on who you know in the public service. Sometimes those awarding the tenders receive kickbacks from the successful companies.”