'Comply or get the boot'

ANC premiers and mayors who refuse to take instructions from the organisation will be removed from their positions, ANC treasurer-general Mathews Phosa said yesterday.

ANC premiers and mayors who refuse to take instructions from the organisation will be removed from their positions, ANC treasurer-general Mathews Phosa said yesterday.

Speaking at the ANC's 96th anniversary rally in Philippi in Cape Town, Phosa said there was no ANC leader who was above the organisation.

"If President Thabo Mbeki can take instructions from the organisation, then who are you as councillors or premiers to refuse to do the same? If you do not take instructions, then you are asking for marching orders," he said.

He dismissed as factionalism a suggestion that there was tension between ANC president Jacob Zuma and Mbeki.

"Mbeki and Zuma are working together - they are busy implementing the resolutions of the Polokwane conference. Those who want us to believe otherwise are simple lying."

Speaking at the same event, ANC Western Cape chairman James Ngculu conceded that the ANC national conference in Polokwane left the organisation divided.

Ngculu, who supported Mbeki's third term bid, said it was important for members to realise that Mbeki was simply exercising his democratic right to stand and so were those who supported him.

"It is normal in the ANC for leadership to be contested.

"However, it was abnormal for candidates who had lost in the election to be victimised by those who had won."

He said leaders had contested elections in the ANC before but they were never humiliated after losing.

Ngculu appealed for unity in the organisation. He said it was important for the ANC to put Polokwane behind it for the sake of unity. - Sapa

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