Mabuza slams graft and ANC infighting

Deputy president meets with Mpondoland king

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Deputy President David Mabuza in his visit to the Eastern Cape lashed out at corruption, ANC internal squabbles and fights over positions, saying the rot impacted negatively on the ANC, costing it dearly.
He made a courtesy visit to Western Mpondoland King Ndamase Ndamase in Nyandeni Great Place near Libode on Friday, where he reminded people of the pivotal role of traditional leadership in an African and democratic state.
“After the general elections, one of the top priorities of the new government of President Cyril Ramaphosa will be to ensure that traditional leadership is put in the best place ever and their dignity restored fully. We are all subjects of our traditional leaders and therefore traditional leaders should be treated as such and accorded the dignity they deserve,” he said.
The meeting was attended by traditional leaders, ANC members, MECs and government officials.
The visit came hardly a month after King Ndamase’s traditional leaders in January 23 complained to the ANC provincial treasurer and human settlement MEC Lubabalo Madikizela on how President Cyril Ramaphosa and his ANC Top 6 had “disregarded and deliberately snubbed” the AmaMpondo nation.
Mabuza said: ‘’You must always remember that the founding pillars of the ANC are the traditional leaders. But, erroneously and disappointingly, the ANC dumped traditional leaders and moved alone. There are now few people within the ANC who respect traditional leaders.”
When Mabuza was Mpumalanga premier his government in 2015 bought 240 cattle and spent R34m on luxury cars for their 60 traditional leaders. The provincial agriculture department gave Mpumalanga’s traditional leaders – two kings and 58 chiefs – three Nguni heifers and a bull each.
The department of co-operative governance & traditional affairs (Cogta) bought Mercedes-Benz ML 500s for the two AmaNdebele kings, Makhosonke II and Mabhoko III, and Toyota and Ford 4x4s for the chiefs.
He said that was part of a programme to restore the dignity of traditional leaders.
“Now, I see that all other traditional leaders in South Africa have a burning desire to have that programme I started in Mpumalanga to be rolled out countrywide”
He said that he would donate a tractor and cattle to King Ndamase but stressed it was not with government money.
Mabuza said the ruling party needed to fast-track the issue of land expropriation to ensure food security in the rural parts of the Eastern Cape.
Mabuza bemoaned infighting, disputes and claims among traditional leaders as a rot that was denting the image of traditional leadership.
He called upon unity within the ANC so to protect freedom.
“The infighting within the ANC must come to a stop. You are not calling me Mr Unity for nothing, I am embedded in unity, the unity of the ANC. Why are we fighting among ourselves, are we fighting over government positions?
“Government positions will come and go, but the ANC will be there forever. Our predecessors, most of them from the Eastern Cape, led the organisation with dignity and they handed over the organisation intact and strong to us. We don’t want the ANC to die in our hands, that cannot happen,” he said.
Mabuza lashed out at corrupt and greedy leaders who he said were dragging the ANC name through the mud.
“There is perception that we are corrupt, they say we are thieves. Let us stop stealing. We cannot tolerate corruption.”
King Ndamase requested assistance for AmaMpondo to work the land, to benefit from the ocean economy and to participate in the food security programme...

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