Former president Jacob Zuma threw the zap sign at the ANC when he refused to respond to the governing party’s suspension letter because “he doesn’t have time to argue with political idiots”.
The party, through its secretary general, Fikile Mbalula, wrote a letter a fortnight ago to Zuma, who is campaigning for the newly formed uMkhonto Wesizwe (MK) Party, informing him that he was suspended from the ANC for insubordination, which was justified under “exceptional circumstances”.
In the letter, the ruling party did not give a deadline for Zuma to respond, but Sunday World learned that he was expected to respond within two weeks of the issuance of the letter. But Zuma has shown the party the middle finger and responded to the letter on sandy soil.
Two senior members of the MK Party told Sunday World this week that Zuma would not lose any sleep over the ANC’s national executive committee’s (NEC) decision to suspend him or respond to the missive.
“Zuma is an ANC member through and through, even if they can suspend him or cancel his membership. They can cancel his ANC membership and even suspend him from the party, but they will never take the ANC from him because his blood is green, black, and
yellow,” said one of the members, who asked not to be named because he isn’t the party spokesperson.
“Zuma has been saying the ANC must fix the mess they created, get rid of all the puppets and sell-outs in the organisation, and then they can consider
getting his vote. Zuma didn’t take the decision not to vote for the ANC lightly, but he consulted with many of his comrades before making the decision,”
Another MK Party member, who also asked not to be named as he isn’t allowed to speak to the press, said the ANC was jealous of Zuma’s popularity and the new party is making “serious inroads across the country”.
“They thought he was dead and buried, but they didn’t know that he was a seed. Ubaba isn’t going to respond to the ANC letter of suspension because he doesn’t have time to argue with political idiots.
He is busy building a new movement to take the ANC head-on in the elections.
“These guys are idiots with shallow political thinking; they will go all out just to destroy one person who chose to make political decisions and vote for a political party of his choice. They forget that the constitution of this country is bigger than theirs,” he said.
The member added that Zuma had been a member of the ANC and uMkhonto Wesizwe, which was the military wing of the party for years. In its letter of immediate suspension to Zuma, the ANC NEC accused him of violating at least seven clauses of the ANC constitution. These included a breach of the membership oath, bringing the party into disrepute, sowing racism and tribal chauvinism and sowing divisions.
In a press statement announcing their decision to suspend Zuma, the ANC said Msholozi is “actively impugning the integrity of the ANC and campaigning to dislodge the ANC from power while claiming that he has not terminated his membership”.
The party added that “Zuma and others whose conduct conflicts with our values and principles will find themselves outside the ANC”.
Announcing his decision not to vote for the ANC in this year’s elections, Zuma told the gathering at the new party’s launch in December that when he joined the ANC back in the day, he signed on a piece of paper and took an oath when he joined MK.
“I have served as a volunteer for the ANC, I have been a member of the ANC youth league, and I have also been trusted to hold a number of positions throughout my 64 years of membership.
“I have also served in the military wing of the ANC, Umkhonto WeSizwe, where my commanders assigned me a number of tasks that I saw through. I have always put the ANC before any other personal interests in pursuit of the greater goal of liberation. I was loyal to the organisation then, and I remain a loyal servant of the ANC,” Zuma said.
He added that he felt it was necessary to undertake a process “to rescue the ANC from the wrong hands and bring it back to the people”.
He accused the current ANC leadership, especially its president, Cyril Ramaphosa, of “behaving in an un-ANC manner”.
ANC spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri said Zuma had more or less 14 days to respond from the day the suspension took effect on January 29, suggesting that at the latest, Zuma should have responded by today.
“Zuma is the property of the national disciplinary committee. There is no polarised view. There is agreement that he has acted contrary to the ANC constitution,” Bhengu-Motsiri said.
Asked about the possibility of Zuma’s expulsion, she said only the disciplinary committee would decide his fate.