ANC blasts Tito Mboweni for tweet opposing Reserve Bank's nationalisation

15 January 2020 - 17:14 By Zimasa Matiwane
Finance minister Tito Mboweni has been reminded in no uncertain terms that he is 'expected at all times to uphold and defend resolutions of the ANC on public platforms'.
Finance minister Tito Mboweni has been reminded in no uncertain terms that he is 'expected at all times to uphold and defend resolutions of the ANC on public platforms'.
Image: ESA ALEXANDER/SUNDAY TIMES

The ANC has censured finance minister and senior member Tito Mboweni for saying the party’s resolution to nationalise the Reserve Bank was a mistake. 

Mboweni made his position known on social media on Tuesday when he tweeted that he was not behind the ANC’s decision to nationalise the central bank.

The ANC come out guns blazing on Wednesday against Mboweni, suggesting that his statement fed into the narrative of a lack of policy certainty. 

In a strongly worded statement, ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe expressed concern over Mboweni’s public posture on the bank, especially as he held a position in the economic cluster.

“It is our view that comrade Tito should act with care and be cautious at all times on matters of policy given his position as the minister of finance, including subjecting himself to the overall communications protocols of the African National Congress. 

“Those who serve in leadership structures of our movement, especially within the national executive committee (NEC), the highest decision-making body in-between conferences, are expected at all times to uphold and defend resolutions of the ANC on public platforms,” said Mabe.

Mboweni had earlier tweeted: "As a longstanding member of the ANC and its leadership structures, I know and understand our resolutions.

"I don’t need lectures on that. But on the SARB, I am convinced that we adopted a wrong resolution. What do we want to achieve? Our strategic focus: structural economic reforms." 

Mabe took the opportunity to remind Mboweni that ANC branches determined policy positions and that elected ANC leaders were not freelancers but remained bound by the overall prescripts of the organisation.

“Only the national conference has the right and power to review, ratify, alter or rescind any decision taken by any of the constituent structures, committees or officials of the organisation,” he said.

The ANC added that all party members in good standing were entitled to take full part in the discussion, formulation and implementation of the policies of the party through appropriate internal platforms.

Mabe encouraged leaders and members of the ANC to raise debates within the confines of the structures and discipline of the party.

“Any public statement by a leader of the ANC questioning the wisdom of a national conference outside formal structures has the potential to create confusion within and outside the organisation.

 “The constitution of the ANC enjoins only the president as the political head to make pronouncements for and on behalf of the NEC, outlining and explaining the policy or attitude of the ANC on any question." 

The ANC reiterated that the NEC elected at Nasrec was steadfast and relentless in its commitment to implement the 54th conference resolutions. 

“The leadership of the ANC is expected to appreciate the need to articulate a consistent, coherent and unifying message on policy positions,” added Mabe.

The question of expansion of the Bank's mandate has remained a thorn in the side of the ANC, with leaders contradicting each other several times on the way forward.


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