He said there was never any “political reason advanced” why comrades should not support the Mpumalanga premier and he himself is 100% rallying behind her bid to become the first ANC provincial chairwoman.
ANC PEC member Sibusiso ‘The Great’ Sgudla this week agreed to be interviewed about his support for Premier Refilwe Mtshweni-Tsipane to take over as the first chairwoman of the party in Mpumalanga.
He also answered questions about why they recently went to visit former President Jacob Zuma in Nkandla.
He told 013NEWS on Sunday afternoon 28 March 2021 that they are rallying behind Tsipane despite Tsipane no longer seeing eye to eye with deputy president David Mabuza.
The Great was Mabuza’s most important aide in the Gert Sibande region until recently when Tsipane cut ties with Mabuza and his Ngci lobby camp to form her own called RMT21.
He said they are rallying 100% behind RMT21 and cannot dump her simply because she no longer sees eye to eye with Mabuza.
“There was never any political reason advanced why comrades should no longer support comrade Refilwe,” The Great said when he spoke to the 013NEWS reporter on the sidelines of the RMT21 rally at Hendrina’s Cosmos hall.
“We are still standing strong behind comrade Refilwe,” he said, adding that the string of rallies they are holding throughout the regions are “to give clarity” to the people who have been misled that the RMT camp and the Focus camp of acting chairman Mandla Ndlovu are now one group.
“This is to confirm comrade Refilwe’s availability for the position of provincial chairperson,” The Great said, referring to the well attended rally in Hendrina and which was addressed by safety and security MEC Vusi Shongwe who is the current ANC provincial treasurer.
Going to Nkandla
Asked why they went to visit former President Jacob Zuma on 16 February 2021, The Great said Zuma remains a father to him and there will never be a time when they will dump him.
He dismissed suggestions that their visit to Nkandla was to try and mend sour relations between the former President and current deputy president DD Mabuza after Mabuza’s alleged sell-out to the CR17 camp in Nasrec.
The Great said the visit was not the first and the last as they regard Zuma as their “father”, somebody they had worked with in the ANC for many years. He said they frequently speak to Zuma over the phone.
He told 013NEWS that the reason they went to Nkandla was first to reaffirm their continued support for the former President as people from Mpumalanga and also to hear his reasons for refusing to appear before the Zondo Commission despite a Constitutional Court order.
The Great said Zuma told them that Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo was not being “fair” and what he was doing was a gross abuse of power.
He said Zuma explained that he never refused to appear before the Zondo commission but had asked that Zondo should recuse himself.
“There are many challenges but but of course I’m not a spokesperson to talk about those issues but look at South Africa today and you will see yourself that there are serious challenges,” The Great said.
He added that there was no such thing that in Nasrec they sold out to CR17. He said himself in person voted for NDZ and even during the time the conveners of NDZ were doing the head-counts he was counted as one of those who were there to vote for NDZ.
“We never had a meeting as Mpumalanga towards Nasrec where we agreed that as the province we would not longer support NDZ. All of us we went to that conference and in it we voted for NDZ. Obviously there were those in our province who preferred a different candidate but that doesn’t mean we sold out and that the reason we go to Nkandla is to seek an apology. That’s not true. We have always supported NDZ and is the reason we are always in court to support comrade Ace Magashule,” said Sgudla.
(edited by ZK)
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