Bongani Hans, IOL, January 29, 2018
White-owned companies involved in corruption are not being investigated because “comrades are scared of white people”.
So said ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule on Sunday, addressing thousands of ANC supporters who packed the Pietermaritzburg City Hall for the ongoing anniversary celebrations of the party.
The Free State Premier was referring to search-and-seizure operations at his offices in his home province and at the Department of Agriculture.
The investigation is apparently in connection with the Estina dairy farm project in Vrede, which has been linked to the Gupta family allegedly enriching themselves with state money.
Magashule said black people, either in government or linked to government projects, are labelled corrupt wherever something illegal was reported.
“When it is whites, it is called collusion, and that you should not arrest them, you cannot lay charges against them. It is because they are whites and they are important. They fixed stadiums in 2010.”
He said this was a demonstration of white supremacy in a country where black people were not in charge.
Magashule claimed that the Hawks were part of a smear campaign to remove him from the position to which he was elected last month.
“They are attempting to remove me, using the dairy farm,” he said.
But Magashule said the law must take its course, and if any wrongdoing was found, there had to be action “without fear”.
“They must not intimidate us because they want us removed. The enemies are not going to sleep until the ANC is weakened,” he said.
The event was organised by the ANC Youth League in KwaZulu-Natal to celebrate the ANC’s 106th birthday.
Among those who accompanied him were former AU Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, who was there to represent the ANC Women’s League, and the chairperson of the suspended KwaZulu-Natal executive committee Sihle Zikalala, who was there as the co-ordinator of the provincial interim structure.
Unlike at the national ANC birthday celebration in East London where President Jacob Zuma was booed, in Pietermaritzburg ANC supporters ululated enthusiastically every time his name was mentioned.
Magashule also warned Zikalala that the court battle that had resulted in the PEC being nullified was a campaign by enemies using party leaders to weaken the ANC in the province so that it would not win national elections in 2019.
He said if the party was weak, it would not be able to implement free education, radical economic transformation and expropriation of land without compensation, the work started by President Zuma.
Magashule said that he had come to the event to give Zikalala’s leadership energy to withstand challenges.
“As the leader of the province, comrade Sihle, you must never doubt yourself.
“They want to make you feel you are wrong in everything.
“Never doubt yourself, because if you doubt yourself, you will fail the ANC.
“Don’t fall and never lose power.”