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'ANC dropped the ball': Jackson Mthembu vows action on PPE saga

Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu admits that the ANC has dropped the ball but says it will make amends.
Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu admits that the ANC has dropped the ball but says it will make amends.
Image: Freddy Mavunda/Business Day

Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu says the ANC is committed to fighting all forms of corruption and malfeasance committed by its members.

Mthembu took to social media at the weekend to lambaste what he called “thugs” in the governing party who allegedly looted Covid-19 relief funds.

Mthembu acknowledged that the ANC had countless times “dropped the ball” and said the party's apology to the public was “sincere”. 

“We commit once again to fight all forms of corruption and malfeasance, especially committed by our members, leaders and public representatives. Where we have dropped the ball, we extend our sincere apologies but we shall make amends,” he said.

Mthembu said no amount of “thuggery and insults” would set the party back.

“No amount of thuggery and insults will change the fact that ANC leads all efforts for social and economic transformation in our country,” he said.

“We can assure the insulters that we will not get into the mud with them, we will continue to serve our people with integrity.”

Mthembu's comments come after the ANC was told to “voetsek” on social media, after numerous revelations about how its members allegedly got personal protective equipment (PPE) tender deals.

So far, those who've been implicated in allegations regarding the PPE tender scandal include presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko’s husband, Chief Madzikane Thandisizwe Diko, and Gauteng health MEC Bandile Masuku and his MMC wife Loyiso Masuku.

Khusela Diko and the Masukus have been placed on a leave of absence while the probe into the PPE saga takes place.

Denial of any wrongdoing

Last week, the Diko family denied that Thandisizwe Diko's company, Royal Bhaca Projects, benefited from a PPE tender amounting to R125m.

The Diko family has also threatened legal action against the Sunday Independent newspaper after it published an article which the Dikos claim to be false.

According to the article, titled “Diko’s Royal Bhaca paid R80m through front company”, the Gauteng department of health paid R80m to Royal Bhaca Projects for its PPE services through a front company called Ledla Structural Development.

However, the author of the article, Piet Rampedi, took to Twitter saying that the information in the article was factual and he was ready to see the Diko family in court.

Chief, not a king

Thandisizwe is a chief and not a king, said the department of co-operative governance & traditional affairs in Eastern Cape.

The department's spokesperson, Mamkeli Ngam, told eNCA that the department was yet to decide on what action to take against Thandisizwe for calling himself King of the amaBhaca.

“The MEC is applying his mind as to what is going to happen. It is a matter that is concerning to us as a department and as a province. We will take the direction from him,” said Ngam.

The grandchildren of Inkosi Madzikane have also accused Thandisizwe of being “mischievous” for referring to himself as king of the royal kingdom of AmaBhaca, the Sowetan reported.

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