BLOEMFONTEIN: Magashule has responded to the veil attack from Manuel over the handling of the project of the ANC stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s Brandfort home.
“Don’t think you are important and powerful. The only thing powerful is the ANC. You are nothing as an individual. That is why we must respect and renew this organisation,” he said.
Magashule has been under fire since his election as the ANC secretary general in December. His daughter has been alleged to have benefited unfairly from a housing project and he has also been fingered in the Estina project in the Free State, which was fast-tracked but which failed to empower the black farmers who were intended beneficiaries.
Last week Manuel laid into Magashule for failing to restore Madikizela-Mandela’s house in Brandfort where she was banished to by the apartheid regime between 1977 and 1986. Manuel was speaking during Madikizela-Mandela’s memorial service in Cape Town.
“This is the same premier who protests the approval for the Estina dairy, totalling some R220m in two weeks. This is the same former premier whose daughter is a beneficiary of a R130m housing contract, but now informs us that this minuscule project to restore the house to which our mother was banished has taken 11 years and can’t be done,” Manuel said.
But Magashule did not take that criticism very lightly. Addressing the mourners yesterday during Madikizela-Mandela’s memorial service, he said, “When you talk about unity of the movement, don’t use memorial services of revolutionaries to attack other leaders. When you don’t attack other leaders, you are not a coward. You are a disciplined member of the movement..”
“Inside internal meetings of the ANC, we talk. We can criticise you but, when I attack and criticise another leader, I am weakening the movement and this is the culture we must understand – we must nurture it,” he said to a crowd that went into a frenzy as he spoke.
Magashule said no individual could be blamed for failing to honour Madikizela-Mandela. Instead the entire ANC should take the blame.
“You can’t blame any leader. In fact, if you have to blame anybody, you must blame the ANC because the ANC is not an organisation of individuals, it’s an organisation of a collective. When any individual fails, it is the organisation that fails,” he added.