Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on stage ahead of a her address at a send-off rally in Durban on Saturday.  Picture: THULI DLAMINI
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on stage ahead of a her address at a send-off rally in Durban on Saturday. Picture: THULI DLAMINI

ANC Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini has made a veiled accusation that deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa has "the experience" of woman abuse.

In an apparent dig aimed at the presidential hopeful‚ Dlamini lashed out at Ramaphosa for his support of President Jacob Zuma’s rape accuser‚ Fezekile Ntsukela Kuzwayo‚ also known as Kwezi. Ramaphosa was speaking during a radio interview earlier in the week.

"We want to say‚ comrade Cyril‚ comrade deputy president‚ if you want to speak out about violence against women and children‚ talk about yourself. You must open up… because you said [that] you know how difficult it is for a woman to take a stand on this issue. And you do have the experience‚" she said.

Dlamini — who was speaking at an KZN joint 16 Days of Activism and elective conference send-off rally in Durban on Saturday — said that violence against woman and children was an issue "where we should take a stand and must not be pushed into a corner to support some and not others".

"But comrade deputy president decide to speak…but he spoke about comrade President Jacob Zuma‚" said Dlamini.

According to an Eyewitness News reporter at the rally‚ Dlamini said after her address that Ramaphosa had to respond to claims of abuse.

"We’re going to call people who are prepared to speak about his history‚" she said in what was an apparent veiled threat.

Speaking as a guest on Karima Brown’s Radio 702 show on Thursday night‚ Ramaphosa was asked whether he believed Kwezi’s claims that she was raped by Zuma in 2005.

"I know how difficult and painful it is for a woman to garner up the courage to stand up and say: ‘Yes‚ I was raped.’ It must be one of the most difficult decisions that she had to make. So‚ yes‚ I would believe her‚" he said.

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‘History-maker’

At the same rally in Durban ANC presidential hopeful Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma told supporters that‚ win or lose‚ she’s already a history-maker.

At the send-off event ahead of the party’s national conference next weekend‚ Dlamini-Zuma said that her nomination for the top ANC post was huge.

"The branches of the ANC and the ANC have made history … because‚ for the first time in the life of our organisation‚ we’re going to have a cadre on the ballot paper for the position of president who‚ amongst other things‚ is a woman. That is already history. Whatever happens at Nasrec‚ history is already made‚" she said to applause.

But‚ she said‚ for the branches and members who stood by her‚ she didn’t want the story to end.

"At Nasrec‚ you must continue to make history‚" she said.

Before taking to the podium in Clermont‚ Dlamini-Zuma was greeted by singing of "we are ready for Nkosazana".

During her address‚ she again took aim at the wealth gap between rich and poor South Africans — particularly along racial lines. This‚ she said‚ is what made her now-familiar refrain of ‘radical economic transformation’‚ so important. Without it‚ she said‚ the playing fields could never be levelled.

But she was adamant that education would be one of the key elements of any such transformation.

"Our education system must not only produce job-seekers‚ but also produce job-creators‚" she said.

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