ANC fobs off threats to disrupt its anniversary
The ANC has dismissed fears that its 104th anniversary programme, which includes the delivery of the annual January 8 statement by President Jacob Zuma at Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg, North West, on Sunday, is under threat of disruption.
On Monday, two rival ANC groups clashed, sparking fears that tensions could escalate as the week progressed. At the centre of the infighting in the province are ANC members who feel marginalised by the faction aligned to North West chairman and Premier Supra Mahumapelo.
Mahumapelo has been linked to the so-called premier league, which is alleged to be behind moves to block Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa from taking over as president when Zuma's term ends.
The league, which is said to enjoy Zuma's support, apparently wants AU Commission chairman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to take over.
A member of the "marginalised group" said there were plans to disrupt all events to be addressed by ANC national leaders.
"We will target all events in the province to raise our grievances, which had been ignored all along. The administration under Supra Mahumapelo has been purging comrades from government departments and businesspeople are blacklisted."
The group has also been calling for Mahumapelo's removal as premier.
But ANC national spokesman Keith Khoza said the party did not anticipate any disruptions. He said the party's national leadership had since the beginning of the week been addressing ANC branches and community meetings on grievances that had been raised.
"We have noted issues that have been raised, like problems of water, and where we can, we attend to the problem immediately. In instances in which we cannot, we tell our people we will revert to them when we have solutions."
He said those demanding Mahumapelo's removal would have to raise the issue within ANC structures.
"That is a matter that the ANC in the province has to deal with," he said.