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'Mbeki's my friend, so what?'

By unknown | Mar 18, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Kingdom Mabuza

Cope presidential candidate Mvume Dandala has admitted that he has "a close relationship" with former ANC president Thabo Mbeki.

Dandala said that in his previous role in church affairs he had the opportunity to interact with Mbeki and they had formed a close relationship.

"If people want to turn that relationship into a personal relationship it is entirely up to them."

Speaking to the media yesterday in Kliptown, Soweto, he rejected the idea that the formation of the new party was driven by Mbeki.

Weekend reports alleged that Mbeki was approached to mediate in the party's internal squabbles.

During most Cope events members have sung songs in praise of Mbeki's leadership, urging him to lead them against the ANC.

But Mbeki's office has steadfastly denied links to the breakaway party.

Dandala also said the party would "never form a coalition" with the ANC. He said Cope would also write to the public protector to investigate the R1million a month spent on ANC president Jacob Zuma's security.

"R1million a month sounds excessive. If the security is not the same for everybody, we need to know why."

The party would also request the public protector investigate the alleged use of food parcels by the ANC for electioneering purposes.

He said it was "immoral and insulting to the poor who need this assistance daily - rather than when votes are solicited".

Should Cope come into power, the Scorpions would be reinstated without delay, he said.

Dandala also said that Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe should be hauled before the International Criminal Court to explain the "tragic situation" in his country.


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