Bathabile Dlamini refuses to engage with media over threatened new party

ANCWL president and former minister Bathabile Dlamini has refused to elaborate on her claims that women in the ANC would leave to form their own party.
ANCWL president and former minister Bathabile Dlamini has refused to elaborate on her claims that women in the ANC would leave to form their own party.
Image: Veli Nhlapo/Sowetan.

The ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) president Bathabile Dlamini refused to engage with journalists in Durban on Wednesday over recent threats that she might form her own political party. 

Dlamini remained unperturbed by questions flung at her over her recent rant, which was directed at the ruling party and made at an ANCWL event in Johannesburg on Tuesday, following the announcement of the removal of eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede.

She had been in the province to meet and engage with provincial leadership.

Dlamini's visit coincided with a provincial executive committee (PEC) meeting, which commenced on Wednesday, to discuss the redeployment of its eThekwini and uMsunduzi executive committee members. 

Despite waiting hours to engage with Dlamini over her remarks about the new generation of women leaders, who she said were likely to form their own feminist organisation in the near future, members of the media were shunned by the former minister of women in the presidency and of social development. 

Dlamini instead referred all questions to the league's secretary-general Meokgo Matuba. 

Matuba said the league had no problems with the ANC's decision regarding Gumede. She said the party had furnished them with the report that ultimately led to its decision to drop the axe on the embattled mayor. 

"If there are issues, if there was an assessment [sic], we know that as a deployee of the ANC, you will be assessed - and definitely after receiving the outcome, you will be told that these are the practical steps that the ANC will take in terms of a correcting or improving on its services," said Matuba.

She said whatever position had been taken by the ANC, the league would abide by its decision. 

This follows Dlamini's comments on Tuesday that she was not happy that it was "easy" to remove women leaders in the party.

"We are going to meet with KZN officials ... [We are] very unhappy about the culture of making it easy to remove women [from] positions of power," said Dlamini.

She said women in the party were not demanding positions in the party because they wanted to be seen as high flyers.

Gumede is seen as a close ally of former president Jacob Zuma and part of the so-called "RET forces" faction in the ANC, which Dlamini is also understood to be part of. RET is an acronym for radical economic transformation. 


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