ANC KZN leader slams rivals for using the EFF's lawyer

16 August 2017 - 19:36 By Nathi Olifant
Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi. File photo.
Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi. File photo.
Image: Gallo Images / Beeld / Felix Dlangamandla

KwaZulu-Natal ANC chairman Sihle Zikalala wasted no time on Wednesday afternoon to lash out at a rival faction for their use of "EFF-aligned" lawyer Tembeka Ngcukaitobi.

Ngcukaitobi is the rebel branches' instructing lawyer in their case against the parent body in the Pietermaritzburg High Court. Ngcukaitobi made a name for himself by representing the EFF in many court cases‚ including against President Jacob Zuma.

The branches want the court to rule that the 2015 provincial elective conference be declared null and void over various accusations. Among them are claims that the ANC's official provincial twitter account posted almost identical results to the final outcome while voting for leadership was still under way.

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The rebels' use of Ngcukaitobi appeared to annoy Zikalala‚ who complained that ANC members are sharing organisational issues with the "counter-revolutionary".

"I do not want to touch on what's happening inside the court in the case about the conference. However‚ even if issues are sub judice there are a few things I just want to mention‚" said Zikalala.

Clad in a grey suit‚ Zikalala addressed hundreds of ANC supporters at the Pietermaritzburg Market Square‚ saying there was nothing as bad as a family knowing its problems but instead going out to invite enemies.

"It's very‚ very disheartening that some of the comrades will go to the extent of inviting lawyers who always represent the EFF to represent them today. We want to make it clear that you are sharing information with the counter-revolutionary. You are colluding with the counter-revolutionary‚" said Zikalala.

He was speaking following the adjournment and said he wished for the court to now call for oral evidence as they were still dealing with documents and their admissibility. The entire afternoon had been spent with the ANC's lawyer‚ Greg Harper‚ arguing with the judges on the locus standi as it was not clear if the applicants had the right to bring in the litigation before exhausting all internal party processes.

Earlier the applicants had argued that they resorted to court after the ANC national executive committee had started inducting the newly-elected provincial executive committee.

Zikalala said if anyone needed to be called by the courts it was him as former secretary and Senzo Mchunu as former chairperson. He argued that those who took the ANC to court in fact were the ones who had called for the early 2015 elective conference.

"We know what happened from the beginning to the end...how did it all come to this? People must know it's not about us but about the ANC. The ANC doesn't join us but we join the ANC. So let's stop taking the ANC to court‚" said Zikalala.

He said their problems will not be solved by the courts nor will the judge bring unity to the ANC irrespective of the subsequent judgment.

He also fired a broadside at NEC member Bheki Cele who had addressed a gathering in Umlazi on Sunday. Cele had said he was ashamed to be a member of the NEC. Zikalala called on him to resign if he sat on a structure he was ashamed of.

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