High drama at ANC NEC meeting discussing Ramaphosa’s fate

Mawande AmaShabalala Political journalist
President Cyril Ramaphosa leaving the NEC meeting in Nasrec, Johannesburg.
SO NEC President Cyril Ramaphosa leaving the NEC meeting in Nasrec, Johannesburg.

The Nasrec conference centre south of Johannesburg was a hive of activity on Monday as the party’s highest decision-making body between conferences met.

At the national executive committee meeting the centre of discussion was the section 89 parliamentary panel report on Phala Phala, which found that party president Cyril Ramaphosa has a case to answer in relation to the theft of dollars at his farm in Limpopo.

Ramaphosa delivered his political overview before being asked to recuse himself barely an hour into the meeting to allow members to express themselves freely in his absence.

Also in attendance was former ANC president Thabo Mbeki, who has been highly invested in the Phala Phala saga. Mbeki was among the NEC members to get to Nasrec early on Monday.

At the entrance, dozens of pro-Ramaphosa supporters clad in ANC regalia sang and danced in support of the embattled president and berated his opponents.

They sang fresh amagwijo songs taking a swipe at ANC treasurer-general and the ANC’s so-called RET faction.

“We are here to support our president. Today is the day our NEC is going to discuss our president’s fate, and we support the president because we did the same with the other presidents,” said Maropeng Serakwana, a Soweto ANC branch member.

“Our reason to be here is that the president must be treated fairly like any other citizen of this country. The president is not yet criminally charged. We dismiss the ambition of the anti-revolutionary forces and plans of those who want to dethrone the president and collapse this country.”

Inside the meeting, Ramaphosa’s allies appeared relaxed after their victory at the national working committee meeting on Sunday.

One of Ramaphosa’s close allies, when asked why he was so jovial, said: “When you are in control, you become calm.”

At the NWC meeting on Sunday, Ramaphosa’s allies scored a victory by forcing an agreement that the ANC caucus must be instructed to reject the section 89 inquiry on Tuesday.

A Ramaphosa opponent told TimesLIVE that the ANC will not go down with Ramaphosa because of “his private affairs in his private farm, he is on his own”.

The meeting is set to decide what line the party will give its MPs in the vote on whether to proceed with an impeachment inquiry arising from the panel report.

The NEC meeting continues.


Would you like to comment on this article?
Register (it's quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.