Ace Magashule. Picture: REUTERS/ROGAN WARD
Ace Magashule. Picture: REUTERS/ROGAN WARD

ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa has told party’s MPs he’s “dismayed” by the conduct of suspended secretary-general Ace Magashule for claiming that Ramaphosa is also on suspension. 

According to the acting spokesperson of the ANC parliamentary caucus Nomfanelo Kota, Ramaphosa made the remarks during his opening comments at the regular meeting of the ANC caucus at which he welcomed MPs from a month-long recess.

Magushule plunged the ANC into high drama on Wednesday when he unilaterally issued a letter announcing the “suspension” of Ramaphosa, citing allegations around the CR17 campaign funding. 

Kota said while Ramaphosa was giving “marching orders” to party MPs ahead of several critical political events, including local government campaigning, he used the opportunity to slam Magashule for alleging that Ramaphosa has also been suspended.

“In his opening remarks at the meeting, he expressed his dismay over [Wednesday] night’s events, especially his ‘suspension’,” said Kota, when asked about the meeting. “He stated that, in his view, the [the purported suspension] was null and void as it had not been discussed by any of the officials.” 

By “officials”, Kota was referring to other top six officials of the ANC, such as deputy president David Mabuza, national chair Gwede Mantashe, Magashule’s deputy Jessie Duarte and treasurer-general Paul Mashatile.

The move by Magashule has been interpreted as part of the former Free State premier’s fightback strategy as it came just hours after the ANC national working committee (NWC) announced it had resolved to suspend him.

In a letter signed by Duarte, the ANC NWC said it was suspending its secretary-general after he failed to comply with a national executive committee resolution that he and others facing criminal charges should step aside from their positions by the end of April.

Magashule is due to go on trial later this year over corruption, racketeering and money laundering charges related to a multimillion-rand asbestos eradication tender issued under his tenure as Free State premier.  

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