ANC to decide on Gumede's future as mayor of eThekwini

Zandile Gumede.
Zandile Gumede.
Image: Thuli Dlamini

The ANC national and KwaZulu-Natal leadership will today meet to discuss whether axed eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede should be reinstated.

Gumede threw the party into a tailspin last week when she withdrew her resignation, a move which saw the inauguration of Mxolisi Kaunda as the new mayor being suspended.

This came after Gumede met with national officials to plead for her job back after the provincial executive committee (PEC) axed her for various reasons, including failure to deliver services.

She is also facing corruption charges, but the PEC maintained their decision was not based on this.

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KZN premier and ANC chairperson in the province Sihle Zikalala said that he would be part of the meeting, but raised concern about Gumede’s unwillingness to accept the decision to remove her from office. Speaking at Winnie Madikizela-Mandela memorial lecture in KZN over the weekend, Zikalala cautioned against members who do not accept party decisions.

“If she’s a member of the ANC after the engagement, we will accept that whatever  that becomes the decision will have to be embraced by all of us and then ensure that we implement that decision,” said Zikalala.

“So when we meet on Monday, what becomes the decision there will have to be implemented.” It was reported last week that Gumede called ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule to complain about unfair treatment in the process of her removal.

This has been rejected by the party. Provincial spokesperson Ricardo Mthembu said that the party took serious issue with Gumede’s defiance.

“People have rights to air their views and to act in whatever way, but it is a problem when they do not accept the decisions of the ANC," said Mthembu.

If the ANC leadership upholds the decision to axe Gumede and demand that she withdraws her resignation withdrawal, the province will then continue with the election and inaugurate Gumede’s replacement.

Mthembu said they might even consider taking disciplinary measures against Gumede.

“We’ve got a process of disciplinary processes which if it requires us to deal with and then we will deal with those matters, but for now we are not pronouncing on anything except to say that we are looking closely [at this],” said Mthembu.

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