ANC ready for EFF romance in Eastern Cape
The ANC in the Eastern Cape has called for a meeting with Julius Malema’s EFF over the future of the Nelson Mandela Bay mayorship.
Lulama Ngcukaitobi‚ the ANC Eastern Cape secretary‚ said he would lead a delegation of provincial leaders to have formal talks with the EFF on the matter. They were waiting for a response to a letter confirming when the meeting would happen.
This comes after Malema last week announced in Parliament that his party would be tabling a motion of no confidence in NMB mayor Athol Trollip – this because the DA didn’t vote for the EFF’s motion to expropriate land without compensation.
“We are going to remove the mayor of PE‚ not because he stole money or anything [but] because we want to teach these white people that we mean business when we say expropriation of land without compensation‚” he later told supporters.
He said the EFF was going “to cut the throat”‚ just to show the DA they didn’t owe them anything.
Following its announcement‚ the EFF said it wanted the ANC to field former deputy finance minister‚ Mcebisi Jonas‚ or someone similar to him in character and stature.
Jonas last week said he had not had any formal meeting on the matter and declined to comment further.
Ngcukaitobi said the ANC was still waiting for a reply from the EFF after they wrote to them asking for the meeting.
“We are going to meet with them so that they can present their proposal in a structured form‚” said Ngcukaitobi.
He said they had not discussed the EFF’s public call for the party to make Jonas their mayoral candidate.
“We can't discuss the names of the mayor unless you understand the social partners you are going to work with there. So‚ that matter has not been resolved yet‚” said Ngcukaitobi.
He said his party was ready to have a discussion with any party that had the best interests of the city at heart.
Ngcukaitobi said the ANC in the Eastern Cape had also agreed that there should be a meeting with all stakeholders in Port Elizabeth to thrash out a way forward that would be best for the city.
“ANC is a party of coalitions…it has been able to work with SACP and Cosatu in an alliance. It has worked with the National Party‚ IFP [Inkatha Freedom Party] and at some state the National Freedom Party‚” said Ngcukaitobi.
He said as a result of that history‚ it would not be difficult to work with the EFF as the party was not fundamentally opposed to ANC policies.
Following the 2016 local government elections‚ the EFF formed an informal coalition with the DA where it voted for the party to take power in two other metro municipalities.
Although the DA didn’t need the EFF’s vote at the time in Nelson Mandela Bay‚ having formed a coalition with other smaller parties to make a 50 percent plus one majority‚ it now needed the party’s support to stay in power after it fell out with the UDM over the post of the then deputy mayor Mongameli Bobani.
EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi had not replied to a request for comment by the time of writing.