Home South African Mbeki ’protecting ANC legacy’ after stinging letter

Mbeki ’protecting ANC legacy’ after stinging letter

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The statesman wrote to ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte claiming that the party needed to refocus on its historical mission.

Former presidents Thabo Mbeki and Kgalema Motlhante at the ANC manifesto launch held in Tshwane during the party’s local government election campaign this year. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/African News Agency (ANA)

FORMER president Thabo Mbeki has called for the ANC to go back to basics, but a leading political analyst is not convinced by the move.

The statesman last week wrote to ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte claiming that the party needed to refocus on its historical mission.

“It has nothing to do with him (Mbeki) liking the incumbent (President Cyril Ramaphosa), their history is well known in political circles and I don’t think much has been resolved,” political analyst Lukhona Mnguni told Independent Media on Sunday.

According to Mnguni, he did not think Mbeki had any confidence in the current president (Ramaphosa).

“What is clear in his mind is that the ANC is on the verge of implosion. I don’t think Mbeki has confidence in the current ANC president. His intervention in the ANC is simply a legacy project and almost, do I die having tried or do I die having not tried,” Mnguni explained.

He said there was a bit of that legacy project involved in Mbeki’s concerns.

“Ramaphosa is overly pre-occupied with issues of the state. The president is not emerged in the business of the ANC,” he explained.

Mnguni said Mbeki’s letter showed that there is a leadership vacuum in the ANC as Mbeki has not been the party’s president for 14 years, since he was ousted in 2007.

“The issues are quite genuine (but) they are opportunistic in terms of the legacy. ANC elders do not imagine a South Africa that is not governed by the ANC in their lifetime,” he said.

Mnguni also warned that the ANC was not an exception.

”The opportunity has been lost and whatever people are doing is a form of despair,” he added.

Mbeki said the ANC faces the critical point to “seriously and practically refocus on its historic mission”.

He said the ANC’s historic mission was “to serve the people of South Africa”.

The former president said the ANC had to pay serious, practical attention to the four urgent tasks he mentioned in his letter.

He said it was self evident after the local government elections that the ANC should do everything necessary in the polls’ aftermath to constitute the necessary municipal governments as quickly as possible.

Mbeki’s letter, dated November 24, asked that the ANC must do the things he suggested.

”What all this means is that the ANC has never existed for itself or simply to perpetuate its own existence. This means that during the democratic era it cannot be that it exists merely to access power and remain in power,” he said.

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