ANC centres of power raising ugly head again

THIS is a response to Oupa Mmotsa's misleading letter in the Sowetan on April 19.

The writer wants ANC members in Gauteng to elect Nomvula Mokonyane and not Paul Mashatile as chairperson to "ensure one centre of power". He says if Mashatile is elected there will be two centres of power. This is misleading and foreign to ANC tradition.

In the movement the centre of power is not defined on the basis of where anyone is placed. We cannot determine a centre of power on the basis of the chairperson and premier as individuals. Mashatile or Mokonyane cannot, and will never, be centres of power. The ANC, not individuals, is the strategic centre of power .

This kind of debate is raised by people who are scared that Mokonyane will lose to Mashatile because of her weak candidacye. These people want to prevent Mashatile from standing so that Mokonyane can have a free ride to the position.

The same tactic was used against Thabo Mbeki during the build-up to Polokwane.

ANC branches must not be misled by such an ill-informed notion. Those who believe that Mashatile has the right credentials to lead the ANC again must not be intimidated by this loosely conceived and politically misguided opinion.

It is dangerous because it takes the political centre status away from the organisation to individuals. Such an idea must never find a home in our glorious movement.

We must ensure that the centre holds and serves as a fountain from which our leaders should drink. Deployed members must take their mandate from and account to the ANC as the centre of power.

Veli Maphutha, Sekhukhune