The announcement comes on the day the ANC’s 54th national conference is set to start in Nasrec‚ Johannesburg.
Zuma’s announcement on funding for higher education followed the release of the Heher Commission report last month. Maine said he was not surprised by the announcement.
“We knew that it was going to happen‚ there was going to be free education next year‚” Maine told BusinessLIVE.
“This announcement is not made to sway votes in the conference. It is made because there is a need to skill young people in the country‚” Maine added.
He said the president would have been aware of the financial implications of the decision as he is head of the executive.
The ANC’s national executive committee had an urgent meeting on Saturday morning‚ in which the NEC decided to not allow structures that were nullified by the courts to vote at all. These included delegates from North West’s Bojanala region‚ as well as the provincial executive committees of the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal. All of the provinces in question have nominated Dlamini-Zuma as their preferred candidate for president.
Maine accused judges of becoming political. He said there was a clear agenda: “Decrease the numbers of those who support comrade Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. We are aware of the agenda. We are going to crush it and collapse it.”