BRA’s treasurer Cecil Shilakwe is sworn in as new MPL

Cecil Shilakwe’s coming in follows the forced removal of Cleopas Maunye.

The treasurer of the Bushbuckridge Resident Association has been sworn in as a member of the Mpumalanga legislature.

Cecil Shilakwe was sworn in on Monday this week (24 Apr).

Legislature spokeswoman Zamagambu Memela-Gamede said speaker Thandi Shongwe warmly welcomed him after he took oath on Monday.

“She wished him well in the duty of representing his political party and the people of the province of Mpumalanga,” Memela-Gamede said.

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“The speaker further appreciated the good working relations that BRA displayed while represented by their former member, Mr Maunye, with the hope that member Shilakwe will continue where his predecessor left off,” said the legislature spokeswoman.

Maunye left BRA on 2 April 2017 during a mass defection to the ANC at the Acornhoek sports ground facilitated by ANC provincial leader David Mabuza.

SEE HERE: ‘Finally, I’m with Cleopas, I’ll get Delta,’ says Mabuza

“Mr Shilakwe committed that he will perform his duties to the best of his abilities in serving the legislature, the people of Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga province and the Republic of South Africa,” Memela-Gamede said.

Maunye served as the secretary of the movement until he was suspended in mid-February 2017, accused of meeting up with ANC leaders and discussing plans to ‘dissolve’ BRA.

The party then recalled him on 31 March 2017 and then Maunye joined the ANC on 2 April.

SEE ALSO: BRA slates ‘opportunist’ Cleopas Maunye

The movement’s acting secretary Johannes Ndlovu said they wished to thank the people of Bushbuckridge and Mpumalanga for being patient while they were busy with the “internal storm”.

“We have sent comrade Cecil to represent us at the Mpumalanga legislature, we trust him and he will serve our people and represent the mandate of BRA,” Ndlovu said.

(edited by MLM)

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BRA slates ‘opportunist’ Cleopas Maunye

The organisation says his defection to the ANC signifies a leader who is an “opportunist”.

The Bushbuckridge Resident Association has slammed its former secretary who over the weekend defected to the ANC.

Cleopas Maunye left his own organisation on Sunday (2 Apr), leading a group of BRA members back to the ANC at the Acornhoek eHlanzeni FET college sports grounds.

BRA acting secretary Johannes Ndlovu slammed Maunye, saying his whole plan of selling the organisation to the ANC made him a real opportunist.

“You will remember that the reason we suspended him from the organisation was because of the things of him meeting up with ANC people, planning to destroy the movement.

“We were not wrong in our move, look now he has done exactly what we suspended him for,” Ndlovu told the 013NEWS reporter over the phone on Monday evening.

SEE ALSO: Cleopas Maunye ‘selling out to ANC’

Maunye was suspended during a BRA special meeting in February 2017 and recalled from the legislature.

His recall from the Mpumalanga legislature was effective from 31 March 2017.

“One thing they must know is that they will never kill BRA.

“BRA remains strong, he was just promised greener pastures and because he’s an opportunist left and betrayed the people of Bushbuckridge,” Ndlovu said.

SEE ALSO: Mabuza was using Robert Gumede in failed ANC-BRA talks

He said they are still going to show “the world” how strong BRA is with a march that is to be announced soon.

“He left with his few friends who are also opportunists and the organisation remains even stronger. Their strategy of killing BRA won’t work,” Ndlovu said.

But Maunye said Ndlovu should focus on BRA and leave him alone.

“I have nothing to do with BRA. They are the ones who fired me and now what?” he asked.

He said the reason they wanted him out was because they also wanted the legislature salary.

He said if he was a member of the legislature and didn’t get any salary they were not going to focus their energy on him.

“They also dreamt of the money and I said to myself, ‘let me leave in peace’, they must take their seat and I’ll focus on my own life, than fighting with vigilantes,” Maunye said.

He said all members who knew politics have left BRA and only vigilantes were left there now.

SEE ALSO: ‘Finally I’m with Cleopas, I’ll get Delta’ – Mabuza

“They don’t understand politics, they remain disgruntled and that’s what they are,” Maunye said.

He said now he would focus on his being an ANC member and probably use his tertiary qualification to look for work and didn’t care what BRA was saying because he was no longer there.

(edited by ZK)

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‘Finally, I’m with Cleopas, I’ll get Delta’

ANC provincial chairman David Mabuza will get the BRA President Delta Mokoena, he told scores on Sunday.

The President of the Bushbuckridge Resident Association, Delta Mokoena, must watch out, lest he will be enticed back home by Premier David Mabuza.

Mabuza, in his capacity as ANC Mpumalanga leader, welcomed 3000 BRA members back to the ANC at the Acornhoek stadium on Sunday morning.

One of these members was BRA’s ex-secretary Cleopas Maunye, who is also the party’s only member of the Mpumalanga legislature and who was suspended during a BRA special meeting in February 2017 for “selling out to the ANC” and replaced temporarily by current acting secretary Johannes Ndlovu.

SEE ALSO: Cleopas Maunye ‘selling out to the ANC’

Maunye had also been asked by a BRA Task Team to step down as member of the legislature, something he told them he would do at the end of March 2017.

But on Sunday (2 Apr), Maunye led 3000 BRA members back to the ANC.

'Finally, I'm with Cleopas, I'll get Delta'

Mabuza (L), Maunye (C) and Bohlabela chairman Gillion Mashego (R). PICTURE:  Supplied

Addressing the mass defection at the Acornhoek sports ground, Mabuza said his next stop now was to go fetch Mokoena.

Without mentioning Mokoena by name, Mabuza said to thunderous applause: “I’m very happy that finally I’m with Cleopas, Cleopas is now next to me but there’s another one who is left, and I’ll get him, I can bet”.

He said he was now happy that the ANC in Bushbuckridge will unite and achieving this was not “an easy journey”.

SEE ALSO: Mabuza was using Robert Gumede in BRA talks

“It was a painful journey. We have been waiting for this day for some time, we have put out all our efforts into what you are seeing today. This is the big day in the history of the ANC.

“I want to thank comrade Cleopas and the entire leadership that is coming back to the ANC,” Mabuza said.

“This is a beginning of a new chapter, we’re opening a new chapter and I’d like to say to all ANC members who were mistreated and went to form BRA that we never had the opportunity to say sorry.

“You told me everything of how you were mistreated in the ANC and I’d like to take this opportunity and say I’m sorry, on behalf of the ANC in Mpumalanga we apologise,” he said.

The event was attended by Bohlabelo ANC chairman Gillion Mashego, who also addressed the gathering, and provincial chairwoman Violet Siwela and secretary Mandla Ndlovu, amongst others.

BRA is led by Mokoena as President, Daniel Mashigo as Deputy President, him Ndlovu as acting secretary, Netago Mokoena as deputy secretary as well as

treasurer Cecil Shike and won 14 seats in the Bushbuckridge local municipality.

It was formed in 2011 by ex-ANC members and since then it has been giving the ANC an electoral headache in the Bohlabelo region, clinching a seat in the provincial legislature in 2014 general elections.

(edited by MLM)

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EXCLUSIVE: Mabuza was using Robert Gumede in failed ANC-BRA talks

A special conference of the Bushbuckridge movement was held after it emerged that its secretary Cleopas Maunye was meeting with businessman Robert Gumede on the instruction of Premier David Mabuza.

The Bushbuckridge Resident Association this week told 013NEWS they were aware of meetings between IT billionaire Robert Gumede and their secretary, who is also a member of the Mpumalanga legislature, Cleopas Maunye.

Gumede is a close friend of Mpumalanga ANC chairman David Mabuza and the movement said his meeting with Maunye, “and the promises to live nicely”, were on Mabuza’s instructions, “to broker deals and dissolve our movement”.

A special conference in Bushbuckridge’s Acornhoek on 22 February 2017 resolved to recall Maunye as both party secretary and member of legislature.

“But the membership was faithful to him you know,” acting secretary Johannes Ndlovu told 013NEWS on Tuesday afternoon. “We said let’s give him the chance to answer questions but Maunye didn’t come to that conference and membership took [a] decision in his absence,” said Ndlovu, who in that conference was voted to take over from Maunye as acting secretary.

013NEWS understands that on Sunday 5 February 2017, Maunye flew from Mbombela to Johannesburg to meet Gumede.

Mabuza wants BRA to dissolve and Maunye co-opted into the ANC’s provincial executive committee.

SEE ALSO: Cleopas Maunye ‘selling out to ANC’

But this may fail after BRA’s members and followers lost confidence in Maunye, accusing the young politician of selling out to the ANC.

SUSPENDED: BRA Secretary Cleopas Maunye.

A woman who answered the telephone at Gumede’s Tshwane offices said Gumede together with his personal assistant were outside the country on a business trip and would return next week “Tuesday or Wednesday”.

“I’d advise that you call his PA next week Tuesday or Wednesday,” she said.

Mabuza’s office asked that questions be sent through e-mail and will answer after consulting with ‘external stakeholders’ in the matter.

Maunye said he accepted the decision of his party but said all accusations “surfaced” because he was now based in Mbombela, which made members back home believe he was now selling out to the ANC.

Robert Gumede

Robert Gumede. Photo: Paballo Thekiso

The reason Maunye now lives in Mbombela – in the up market West Acres suburb and no longer in Bushbuckridge – is because his party won a seat in the Mpumalanga legislature and was elected to it.

Ndlovu said the ANC will not win in “dissolving” BRA.

The BRA is led by Delta Mokoena as President, Daniel Mashigo as Deputy President, him Ndlovu as acting, Netago Mokoena as deputy secretary as well as treasurer Cecil Shikee and won 14 seats in the Bushbuckridge local municipality.

“We don’t have problems meeting ANC or Mabuza’s people but it’s against principles if we are not informed.

“Comrade Cleopas hid everything from us until we found out ourselves, hence we took the decision,” Ndlovu said, adding a BRA Task Team, made out of local elders, went to deliver the message to Maunye that the Acornhoek special conference resolved to recall him as secretary and requested that he steps down as an MPL.

(edited by ZK)

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BRA’s Cleopas Maunye ‘selling out to ANC’

The secretary of BRA is accused of selling out to the ANC after allegations surfaced that he was in talks with ANC chairman David Mabuza.

Bushbuckridge Residents Association secretary Cleopas Maunye has been suspended from his party pending a disciplinary hearing.

According to weekend media reports Maunye was suspended during a special sitting in Acornhoek three weeks ago but this has not affected his position as member of the Mpumalanga legislature.

It is alleged Maunye has been speaking to Mabuza for a return to the ANC. He needed to consult members of BRA but Maunye has apparently engaged in the talks alone.

Mabuza has been on an offensive in the last 2 years, wooing members from opposition parties and disgruntled ANC members back into the fold.

In 2015 EFF chief whip in the legislature, Ayanda Tshabalala resigned from her seat and defected to the ANC along with a thousand members from the opposition after talks with Mabuza. And just a couple of weeks ago, at the ANC’s 105 birthday bash, the Mpumalanga strongman stunned many when announced a truce with his adversary, Ronald Lamola.

This strategy is said to be Mabuza trump card to the presidency of the ANC when it goes to its elective conference in December.

BRA was formed in 2011 by ex-ANC members and since then it has been giving the ANC an electoral headache in the Bohlabelo region clinching a seat in the provincial legislature in 2014 general elections and 14 council seats in the Bushbuckridge municipality in the 2016 local government elections.

BRA acting secretary Johannes Ndlovu told 013NEWS on Monday mid-day that  a date when Maunye will appear before a disciplinary hearing is yet to be discussed by party top officials.

“We are still going to sit down and agree on the date,” Ndlovu said.

(edited by ZK)

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