nec meeting

Twitter / @_Revolution18

Things set to be awkward at first NEC meeting since state capture inquiry

Things are about to get real awkward…

nec meeting

Twitter / @_Revolution18

Things have not been the same in the corridors of Luthuli House since the commencement of the commission of inquiry into state capture. The ANC’s NEC meeting kicks off for the first time since the state capture inquiry this weekend.

This will be the literal display of how divided the top brass of the ruling party is. President Ramaphosa and former president Jacob Zuma’s loyalists will exchange awkward hugs and face each other right after an explosive period where plots were uncovered and more cards were revealed in Deputy Chief Justice, Raymond Zondo’s inquiry into state capture.

Reflecting on recent events, The Sowetan reported that

some members cannot even be taken seriously as the ANC’s top brass. Former ministers, Faith Muthambi and Bongani Bongo, for example, made it onto the NEC because they were former president Jacob Zuma loyalists, not because the delegates at the Nasrec conference believed they had capacity to sit on the ANC’s highest desicion-making body.

The weekend’s meeting is likely to be sombre because of the passing of NEC member and environmental affairs minister Edna Molewa. But there is also likely to be unease now that the farce over the state capture is up. With the evidence presented at the Zondo commission, there can no longer be just suspicions about who sold the ANC and SA to the Guptas.

Read – State capture inquiry: Six big developments as Guptas launch their defence

Figures heading to the NEC meeting with skeletons exposed by state capture inquiry

People like Mosebenzi Zwane, Faith Muthambi, Gwede Mantashe and Enoch Godongwana will have to stare into the eyes of the other faction and act like everything is normal.

When, in fact, it isn’t because the elephant in the room is the fact that they were revealed as the frontrunners who were bidding off the country’s wealth to the Guptas.

Read – OUTA file high treason charges against Mosebenzi Zwane for his state capture role

Zwane, for instance, almost compromised the security of the country’s banking system to please the Guptas. As it was revealed in the state capture inquiry, he almost went as far as overstepping his boundaries and threatening to change the banking laws to get the Gupta accounts back up and running again.

Furthermore, when Muthambi was the Minister of Communications, her dealings with the Guptas were exposed, thanks to a leaked email thread. In it, she was seen sending confidential government documents to Rajesh Gupta as well as the family’s hatchet man, Ashu Chawla.

Read – State capture inquiry: Faith Muthambi reacts fiercely to Phumla Williams testimony

She was also exposed for abusing her ministerial position and stacking funds irregularly into the Gupta’s media conglomerate.

Mantashe, who has, on countless occasions, vehemently defended himself as well as the banner of the ANC, was also implicated in the Gupta mess. After all, Ian Sinton from Standard Bank did reveal that Mantashe had suddenly summoned banking CEOs to Luthuli House soon after the Gupta accounts were closed.

Read – Black farmers’ union slams Mantashe’s ‘impractical’ 12 000 hectare proposal

He was always the first to speak foul against anyone who cast allegations against the top brass of the ANC when he too appears to have been one of them.

Jessie Duarte is another one. Back when the gravy train was running smoothly, she was a regular feature on the Gupta-owned media outlet, ANN7, shaking down Pravin Gordhan and Mcebisi Jonas.

“If you have difficulty with the ANC, please resign”, she charged at her colleagues.

Read – Jessie Duarte: ‘I am prepared to testify at the state capture inquiry’

Ramaphosa to face plotters for the first time

Two years later, and she is in the hot seat, begging for a chance to appear before Zondo’s inquiry to clear her name as well as that of her children.

Read – Ramaphosa rallies Cosatu troops: “We are going to a war of all wars”

Ace Magashule has yet to feature at the state capture inquiry, However, his hand has most probably been exposed after he was seen at a secret meeting with Zuma and Supra Mahumapelo.

The cat’s out the bag for Magashule. He will enter the NEC meeting knowing full and well that his opposition is aware of his intentions.

Read – The plot thickens: Ace Magashule to face the music over Ramaphosa “coup”

However, possibly the most critical outlook to this meeting will be how Ramaphosa delivers his call for unity. He has admitted publicly that he is aware of the forces that try to dethrone him from the helm of the ANC.

His response to this will be critical to how things move forward internally, ahead of the 2019 general elections.