Millions of South Africans are heading to different polling stations to exercise their democratic right to choose a government of their own choice.
Mpumalanga Premier Refilwe Mtshweni will be voting in the eMalahleni area of Vosman, her office announced.
She will vote at 8 o’clock in the morning at the Ebenezer Church in Ward 8, eMalahleni, spokesman Zibonele Mncwango said.
The IEC on Tuesday said the country’s 22 924 voting stations were ready to open from 7 in the morning to 9 at night. From then on counting will begin.
But in instances where the 9 o’clock closing time finds voters in queue, they will be allowed, the electoral body said.
“The past two days of special voting have helped to iron out any teething problems and ensure everything is in place and ready,” the electoral commission said.
Meanwhile, the EFF also announced provincial leader Collen Sedibe will be casting his vote at the White River Town Hall. National secretary Goodrich Gardee voted one day before the election date of 8 May as a special voter at the KaMagugu Primary School in Mbombela.
The DA said Jane Sithole, a Premier candidate for the party and a provincial leader of the official opposition party in Mpumalanga, will vote at Curro Bankenveld, eMalahleni.
ANC deputy president DD Mabuza will vote in Barberton. The venue is the Azuri farm, just a kilometre from his house and is scheduled to be there at 11 in the morning.
They sent me a bundle of documents on 14 March 2018, two days before the hearing, and those documents were used as exhibits [evidence] against me in the hearing, said Skhosana on Thursday this week.
I did not have time to peruse those documents,” he said.
“I did not even have time to speak to my lawyer and arrange witnesses before the hearing.
“I raised my concern about the time constraint at the hearing and asked for a postponement, but they refused to grant the postponement. If Im expelled from the EFF, I will accept the decision and leave, but will take the EFF to court because the disciplinary hearing processes were against the law,” Skhosana said.
National secretary Godrich Gardee declined to comment.
I dont know what he is talking about. Im not privileged to comment on anything about him and the disciplinary hearing, said Gardee.
Troubled Mpumalanga EFF secretary Alfred Skhosana has hit back at national leader Julius Malema, describing his suspension as an “ugly management of a contestation” ahead of a provincial elective conference.
This paper understands there is a cat-fight between Skhosana and provincial leader Collen Sedibe for power, which Skhosana confirmed.
In an exclusive interview with 013NEWS on Wednesday mid-day this week, Skhosana lambasted Malema, saying all that Malema is doing is just killing the party.
“I might not be conversant with administrative politics because in my 20 years of political experience I’ve never been the secretary but that doesn’t mean I’m the weakest link,” Skhosana told the 013NEWS reporter.
He was criticised the past Sunday by an angry Malema for “underperformance”, labelled a “useless thing” and the reason the EFF is collapsing in Mpumalanga during a meeting at party headquarters in Braamfontein, Guateng.
Malema then suspended him, severely criticising the report he delivered on behalf of the Mpumalanga EFF, before party national secretary Godrich Gardee gave him a letter asking him to explain why he should not be taken out of the Mpumalanga legislature.
“I’m not having a stress myself. If they want to shield Collen Sedibe, pretending I’m the one who is killing the EFF let them do it but when I’ve left they will see who was actually the weakest link in the province. There will be no organisation,” a calm Skhosana said.
He said the Mpumalanga EFF is preparing an elective conference and Malema and Gardee were trying to frustrate him from contesting Sedibe.
“I’m psychologically prepared to part ways. I’ve had enough,” he said.
“When people are fighting and they are left with three months towards the conference, what’s the use of suspending one of them? Obviously you are trying to manage the contestation in the province and you manage it very ugly,” Skhosana said.
He said despite the letter he got from Gardee asking him to give reasons why he should continue as a member of legislature, Malema on Sunday only suspended him “verbally” but won’t challenge it as he can see they want him out of the party by taking sides in the battle between himself and Sedibe and he is himself “psychologically prepared to part ways”.
“This thing of a suspension he (Malema) said it in a meeting. He said, ‘Ah secretary (Gardee) please prepare a letter this man is now suspended,” Skhosana told the reporter.
“It’s their choice let them do what they want to do,” he said.
Sources say Malema is angry with Mpumalanga’s underperformance.
EFF national leader Julius Malema has suspended Mpumalanga secretary Alfred Skhosana – AGAIN – and told him to wait at home until a disciplinary hearing settles the matter.
Skhosana this time is suspended for “underperformance,” this paper has learnt, and has been “relieved” from all party duties, including representing the EFF in the Mpumalanga legislature.
This is the second time Skhosana has been suspended by the higher structure of the party.
In August 2016, the party suspended Skhosana for skipping payments of the monthly party levy that all EFF parliamentarians, legislature members and councillors are compelled to pay.
A highly-placed source told the 013NEWS reporter on Monday this week that on Sunday the entire Mpumalanga leadership of the party was summoned to party headquarters in Braamfontein, Gauteng where an angry Malema ripped into Skhosana and party councillors who have been “underperforming” and skipping payments of the party levy.
“They summoned the provincial command team and regional representatives to the HQ,” the source told the reporter.
“All of us we were there the whole day on Sunday and we dealt with issues,” the source said.
“On Saturday it was Governance Task Units issues and on Sunday HQ was dealing with Mpumalanga,” the source told the reporter over the phone.
Alfred Skhosana. PICTURE BY Lowvelder.
“I’ve never seen Malema angry like that in my life. All of us we were shaking. It can mean the end of your political career. Skhosana read the report as secretary on behalf of the PCT and Malema criticised it and called him a useless thing and said with people like him that’s why the EFF is struggling in Mpumalanga,” the source said.
Another source, who serves in one of the regions of Mpumalanga but who didn’t attend the Sunday meeting at party headquarters, on Sunday night sent the 013NEWS reporter a WhatsApp text, reading: “Skhosana is suspended as a secretary. They say Julius was scathing (sic) to his conduct. Even the report he presented was (sic) shambolic. He said without Collen in this province EFF will collapse”.
Skhosana didn’t pick up his phone on Monday this week.
Provincial spokesman Collen Sedibe on Monday morning this week declined to comment, saying all media enquiries should go to national secretary Godrich Gardee.
“Please phone Gardee,” Sedibe said over the phone.
When asked, Gardee said: “I don’t know what you are talking about, really”.
Another source in one of the Mpumalanga regions who is privy to national decisions and who frequently chats with the 013NEWS reporter on WhatsApp messenger confirmed the news Skhosana had been placed on suspension and that party MP Veronica Mente is deployed to “assist the party return to its original self”.
“I have also been told of the suspension,” he said over the phone. “I heard they are sending Veronica Mente to help Mpumalanga,” the source said.
Two NGOs are heading to the Tshwane High Court to force government to respect the constitutional rights of people with regard to the air pollution being caused by Mpumalanga’s Sasol and Eskom power plants.