ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule has admitted to meeting former president Jacob Zuma at a Durban hotel on Thursday last week, but was adamant there was no one else at the meeting, which discussed routine party business.
The Sunday Times reported that Magashule, deposed North West premier Supra Mahumapelo, and others were meeting to plot the removal of President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Magashule dismissed the claim, but admitted that he had seen Mahumapelo and “many others” at the hotel.
Magashule told eNCA’s Vuyo Mvoko: “There were many people there. Me and president Jacob Zuma had our own meeting and after that I think he met comrade Supra.
“Yes, I was in the meeting with former president Jacob Zuma as arranged. I did meet president Jacob Zuma. The meeting was about organisational issues. It is not the first time I [have met] comrade Jacob Zuma and there was a need for us to meet.”
Magashule said he had visited KwaZulu-Natal to deal with issues in the province’s Moses Mabhida region. He had then called Zuma to arrange a meeting. "There were issues I wanted to discuss with him and I have confided those issues with ANC national officials.”
Mvoko said: “So ANC officials knew that, on Thursday last week, you were going to meet Jacob Zuma?”
To which Magsshule replied: “No. National officials of the ANC did not then know that I’d be meeting president Jacob Zuma. I’m just saying that in our meeting of officials yesterday, I briefed them about that meeting with president Jacob Zuma.”
He said he never asked permission before arranging meetings.
The officials accepted his explanation of the meeting. He also said he wanted to approach the press council to lay a complaint about the Sunday Times report.