Zuma “used” by family, abused legacy with Umkhonto weSizwe support, deserves discipline or expulsion, says ANC Youth League.

Former president Jacob Zuma is being “used” by his children, friends and family, according to the ANC Youth League after his announcement not to vote or campaign for the ruling party in the upcoming 2024 national elections.

Zuma made the announcement to support the Umkhonto weSizwe party nearly a week ago. The young lions’ president, Collen Malatji, however believed Zuma was being ill-advised by those close to him and should be disciplined or axed from the ANC.

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“It is unfortunate that a former president of the ANC is abused by his kids, friends and family. “They are making him make a lot of mistakes and erasing his legacy and the hard work he has done to fight for the democracy of this country and as a former president for two terms,” said Malatji.

“I don’t know what informed this behaviour but I think it is reckless behaviour on his part.

“At that age they must allow him to retire, stay at home and focus on his kids. He has been an absent father for too long. It’s time to be at home now,” said Malatji.

Zuma’s decision was the greatest form of ill-discipline which the ANC ought to put an end to, Malatji said.

He likened it to some ANC parliamentary officials who failed to toe the party line and voted as they pleased on critical matters, including the vote to adopt the Section 89 panel’s recommendation for a committee to consider President Cyril Ramaphosa’s impeachment process over Phala Phala.

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“I don’t know why the ANC is not acting on discipline. We raised it when people voted against the ANC in parliament. The ANC still didn’t act. It is continuing. Everyone is doing as they please and we are not acting.”

“They are lucky that they are led by a soft president in Ramaphosa. If they were led by me, they would be gone. We would rather have an ANC of a few disciplined people than an ANC with a lot of ill-disciplined people,” Malatji said.

The Youth League condemned the Umkhonto weSizwe party on the basis that it believes it was formed along tribal lines, which is against the values the ANC stands for.

The mother body’s secretary-general, Fikile Mbalula, has indicated they would take legal action against the new party for using a name belonging to the ANC’s armed wing uMkhonto weSizwe.

Zuma is one of many senior members of the party to criticise the ANC. Two weeks ago, Mavuso Msimang resigned on the basis that the party had been wracked by endemic corruption, with devastating consequences on governance and the lives of poor people.

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After talks with several leaders and party structures, he rescinded his resignation when the party agreed to exclude members who have been implicated in state capture and have not been cleared by the integrity committee from 2024 parliamentary lists.

Malatji said the same opportunity was extended to Zuma to engage with the party – to no avail. He slammed the former president for publicly criticising Ramaphosa’s tenure when the party had stood by him during his own tribulations.

“We supported Zuma in the difficult times of Nkandla when there were serious allegations of corruption because they believe in the principle of innocent until proven guilty.

“When Zuma was accused of rape, we stood by him until he was declared innocent.

“It can’t be right that during difficult times we stood by those leaders of the ANC and when it is their turn to support Ramaphosa, they speak a lot of English [rubbish].”


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