Statement by the Office of the Chief Whip and Chairperson of the ANC Caucus

26 November 2007

We issue this statement to object to the malicious reports that our President, Comrade Thabo Mbeki, made comments at the Special Meeting of our National Caucus on the 20th of November which sought to attack our Deputy President , Jacob Zuma.

On the 15th of November our Caucus held a memorial Meeting in honour of an ANC MP who had passed away, Comrade Zopporah Nawa. At our invitation, her daughter, Emmarentia Nawa, addressed Caucus.

Among other things, rightly or wrongly, she spoke about negative developments that had affected the ANC branch to which her mother had belonged. These included the allegation that rapists and other criminal elements had succeeded to capture the leadership of the branch.

We have supplied a copy of Emmerentia´s statement titled `Family tribute to Z.N. Nawa`.

When he addressed Caucus on the 20th of November, President Mbeki reminded our members of what Emmarentia Nawa had said. He also said that all of us knew that the situation which Emmarentia described applied to other branches of the ANC throughout our country.

This is true. Indeed, President Mbeki has raised this matter in previous meetings of Caucus. All of us understood that he raised this issue to encourage us to interact with our membership to defeat this negative development. At no time has he ever referred to Comrade Jacob Zuma.

Knowing the situation in our movement we have never assumed that he spoke to urge us to sustain the value system of the ANC to use this as a disguised attack of Comrade Zuma.

We deeply regret the fact that some anonymous and undisciplined members of our Caucus decided to speak to the media, contrary to our rules, to tell blatant untruths about what President Mbeki said.

We are fully in agreement with our President that as members of the ANC we must fight to defeat the elements that seek to corrupt our movement for selfish purposes. We are certain that the overwhelming majority of the members of our Caucus support us in this regard.

It is most unfortunate that the media has relied on anonymous sources to create a story that has absolutely no substance.

For more information contact:

Moloto Mothapo
Head of Media & Communications
ANC Parliamentary Caucus
Cape Town
021 403 2758 / 082 370 6930