Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni
Premium Journalist
2 minute read
7 Dec 2020
6:14 pm

ANC NEC ‘wiser’ because of Mbeki and Zuma, Magashule says

Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni

Speaking to the media, Magashule said he appreciated the presence of both former statesmen during the meeting which was aimed at, among other things, discussing unity in the party.

Nelson Mandela (C ), celebrates with South African President, Thabo Mbeki (R ) and ANC party president, Jacob Zuma ( L) at a ANC party held in honour of Nelson Mandela's 90th birthday in Pretoria, South Africa, 02 August 2008. Their are deep rifts in the liberation ANC(African National Congress) party with Jacob Zuma appearing 04 August 2008 in court on corruption charges. South Africa will be holding presidential elections 2009. Picture: EPA/KIM LUDBROOK

The ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) has been made “wiser” and more “intelligent” by the participation of former presidents Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma in its meeting which started over the weekend.

So said ANC Secretary General (SG), Ace Magashule, who had an impromptu live virtual briefing on Monday afternoon amid speculations around the topics being discussed at the event, which Magashule referred to as an “ordinary meeting”, according to their calendar.

Speaking to the media, Magashule said he appreciated the presence of both former party president during the meeting which was aimed at, among other things, discussing unity in the party.

“We are happy the presidents comrade Thabo Mbeki and comrade  Jacob Zuma have joined us, they have been doing so in the past two, three meetings and we then think we are even wiser and intelligent. The president (Cyril Ramaphosa) of course has actually had a political overview which was quite informative giving us direction uniting the ANC.”

Earlier in the day, the party clarified the attendance of Mbeki during the meeting over the weekend, after reports suggested Mbeki was attending an NEC meeting for the first time since he resigned as president in 2008.  Mbeki was recalled seven months before the end of his term following his decision to suspend the then corruption accused deputy president, Zuma.

ALSO READ: ANC clears air on Mbeki NEC meeting attendance

Magashule stressed that the party’s top structure was meeting in the spirit of unity as it ended the year.

“I think we are at a stage where I think we are discussing the issues which affect our people which are issues of the economy, issues of jobs, our relationship with the alliance structures and the fact that we have been working together during this year and further looking at consolidating the unity of the ANC.”

Other items on the agenda included state-owned enterprises, the economic downturn, and the tripartite alliance.

Magashule described the meeting as frank and all challenges facing the ANC were on the table including conference resolutions and branch issues.

“The main issues affecting our people is the issue of GBV, the issue of branch conferences, the issues of poverty, unemployment, those are economic issues we are dealing with and I think the last issue we are focusing on is the issue of Covid-19.”

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