Johannesburg – The ANC has dismissed calls by President Jacob Zuma's supporters for action against those who may have voted in favour of a motion of no confidence against him, saying it would only amount to chasing shadows.
ANC MPs defeated a motion for Zuma's removal by 198 to 177 votes on Tuesday with 9 abstentions. This means at least 30 to 40 ANC MPS refused to toe the party line.
“What members need to understand is that the ANC shouldn’t be chasing a shadow of itself, where everybody is the enemy. It can’t be,” said the party's national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa.
The ANC Youth League president and Umkhonto WeSizwe Military Veterans Association’s president have both expressed a desire to see MPs, who said they would not vote against the motion, plucked out of the legislature.
ANCYL president Collen Maine said although he accepted there was no way of finding out the identity of those who could have cost Zuma his presidency, action should be taken against MPs who previously expressed a motion of no confidence in the president.
“Those who have been vocal must be removed from Parliament,” Maine told News24.
Dr Makhosi Khoza, former Ekurhuleni Mayor Mondli Gungubele along with former ministers Pravin Gordhan and Derek Hanekom had all expressed a lack of confidence in Zuma and a desire to vote according to their conscience in the lead up to the motion.
Maine said he felt those who voted against Zuma were “taking chances”.
“Internal political issues played themselves out in the legislature,” he said, blaming ANC MPs voting with the opposition on factional battles in the ANC ahead of its December national elective conference.
MKMVA President Kebby Maphatsoe had similar sentiments, saying rogue MPS should not only be removed from the house but from the ANC as well.
“For me ... they must be expelled. They defined themselves outside of the organisation,” said Maphatsoe who said he wanted disciplinary action taken against MPs who had been vocal.
He added that their fate should lie with the ANC’s disciplinary committee.
Maphatsoe also took issue with the ANC’s current leadership for failing to act decisively against those who were refusing to toe the party line.
“They should have been removed immediately. The indecisiveness and paralysis meant other members would be emboldened,” Maphatsoe said.
Kodwa said both structures were autonomous and had the right to express their views.