The African National Congress distances itself from comments by an ANC Youth League spokesperson yesterday (12 May 2009) about DA leader Helen Zille and her provincial cabinet (see here).
Zille's statements earlier in the week about President Jacob Zuma (see here) were indeed reprehensible and, quite correctly, were roundly condemned. She justly deserves criticism for the unrepresentative composition of her cabinet.
But this does not justify the comments by the ANC Youth League. These comments are deeply embarrassing to the ANC, and reflect a marked departure from the ANC's approach to political engagement.
The ANC will not lower itself to Zille's level, and will not allow her vitriolic attacks on the person of the President to set the tone for interaction among political parties.
The ANC reiterates its rejection of Zille's statements. It shows that she is increasingly out of touch with the mood of the nation.
Statement issued by Gwede Mantashe, Secretary General of the African National Congress, May 13 2009
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