ANC blasts UDF plan
The ANC's Western Cape secretary, Songezo Mjongile, has labelled plans to relaunch the United Democratic Front as an "attention-seeking publicity stunt".
But Mario Wanza, a community activist and former youth leader in Cape Town, insists he is relaunching the UDF because the ANC has abandoned its Freedom Charter.
"We have not realised the Freedom Charter ... the struggle itself is not owned by one particular organisation, it is a broad front," said Wanza.
But his plans to relaunch the UDF - a front for the ANC established in Mitchells Plain in 1983 - has rankled some in the ruling party. Some of the party's original founding members - Trevor Manuel, Nomaindia Mfeketo and Jeremy Cronin - blasted the relaunch as "opportunistic".
But Wanza said the ruling party has lost touch with ordinary people.
"The only way to get the ANC to focus on accountability is that it must feel the power of the people on the ground ... that is what we're about," said Wanza.
He was kicked out of the ANC last year after he stood in the local government elections as an independent candidate.
Mjongile said: "You can't speak about the UDF out of context and its historic role in terms of the ability to bring together various groups into the congress tradition ... the first thing they had to do was adopt the Freedom Charter as a guide and accept the political leadership of the ANC."
He said the bid to relaunch the UDF would be akin to someone who wanted to relaunch uMkhonto weSizwe without considering its historical context.
"From where we sit we believe that Mario is just a political opportunist who stood against the ANC as an independent."