Zuma one of the best ANC leaders - Ace Magashule stands his ground... again

ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule. / Alon Skuy
ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule. / Alon Skuy

ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule has described former president Jacob Zuma as one of the best leaders the party has ever produced.

Speaking in Parys in Free State at the handover of the renovated home of child activist Stompie Seipei's mother, he said Zuma represented the best in the ANC.

Magashule, a close ally of Zuma, was recently accused of being part of a plot aimed at ousting ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa following an alleged clandestine meeting at a Durban hotel this month.

"I will continue to meet many leaders of the ANC and president Zuma is a part of the ANC. He is one of the best leaders ever produced by the ANC," Magashule said.

He tried to address the claims of the alleged plot which he, once again, denied ever existed.

"I am Ace Magashule because of the ANC. I will meet many leaders of the ANC."

Magashule said he has had a good relationship with Zuma for many years. "I have worked with Zuma underground and I have fought with him against apartheid."

While addressing hundreds of Tumahole residents who had come to see the revamped Seipei house, someone in the crowd shouted: "phambili nge plot" [forward with the plot].

Magashule, however, said it was impossible for a plot to be planned because the ANC was intact. "There will never be a plot. There is no way we can plot against the leader of the ANC," he responded.

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said: "Ace has been very clear. He has been on the offensive when it comes to Zuma; his survival is still linked to Zuma because he may be implicated with him.

"By saying this publicly he is telling the people to be on the offensive when it comes to protecting Zuma."

Professor Susan Booysens said Magashule's remarks were a clear defiance against the ANC leadership. "He is a repeat offender and his actions are an outright defiance to the leadership of the ANC and to those who respect and accept Ramaphosa's leadership."

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