NEWS & ANALYSIS

Shilowa supporters should participate in poll - COPE(L)

Ndzipho Kalipa says unhappy party members shouldn't disenfranchise themselves

Head of Elections extends olive branch to all former supporters of former Deputy President of COPE

COPE Head of Elections Ndzipho Kalipa believes the right thing to do during this period of election is for all those who are committed to change and a new political landscape in South Africa, is to participate in the elections by voting and not by disenfranchising themselves. They must remember that for the right to vote, a lot of our struggle heroes fought and died. As such this has become a part of constitution and it is the only way our voices can be heard.

Kalipa also reiterates that for those who want to have a corruption free country it is important that they vote for the right alternative, which is the Congress of the People under the leadership of President Lekota. While there has been perceived factional infighting, it is necessary to remind ourselves that the crux of the matter has been the uncompromising stance towards corruption taken by President Lekota and the Congress of the People.

It is his unyielding attitude and his refusal to sweep under the carpet the gross misconduct of the former Deputy President which has been potrayed as factionalist infighting. While most individuals would have urged a compromise or 'political' settlement to convey stability and normality, President Lekota refused.

Accordingly, all South Africans should ponder the question: if President Lekota is committed and willing to expose cankerworms of corruption within the Congress of the People, will he not do the same for the nation?

People must look at the issue from this viewpoint and weigh the matter objectively.

For the sake of clarity and to emphasise what has repeatedly been stated and resolved by the COPE collective, Sipho Ngwema must stop speaking on behalf of COPE; and should instead clarify that he is in fact referring not to the Congress of the People, but the friends of Mbhazima Shilowa.

His sweeping statement that COPE will not be participating in the upcoming election is disingenuous and only attempts to create the wrong public perception. Sipho Ngwema belongs to a small group of people that are sulking (for want of better word) because they have not got their way; this is the plain and simple truth.

Let us not be confused, Shilowa was expelled for his actions of misconduct and misappropriation of parliamentary monies that is the plain and simple truth. Let us call a spade a spade.

Statement issued by Ndzipho Kalipa, COPE National Head of Elections, April 12 2011

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