The ANC has stood behind secretary’general, Ace Magashule, in the backlash he received for encouraging residents of Phillipi, Cape Town, to not “vote for umlungu”.
As reported by the Citizen, the ANC’s national spokesperson, Dakota Legoete stated that the party was not of the view that Magashule’s comments were not racist.
ANC defends Ace Magashule on ‘mlungu’ comments
Legoete explained that the secretary-general was merely reminding the residents of Phillipi about the political parties and figures that only prioritised the interests of South Africa’s minority group.
“According to the explanation we received, it is not a racist statement. We are a nonracial organisation that would not want racial inequity to thrive. We have always believed it is wrong for any human being to be categorised according to race or belief,” Legoete stated.
Magashule charges at DA in defending himself
The man himself did not believe that there was any bigotry in his statement.
“I have explained that the ANC is a non-racial organisation. There are white progressive democrats who have been voting for the ANC who will continue voting for the ANC.
“There are many white South Africans who will still vote for the ANC but our main hope is the black vote and there is nothing wrong to say the DA does represent the white interest. It does represent the elite and the privileged,” he explained.
What about the R400?
The party has yet to respond to accusations that were levelled against Magashule for gifting an ANC supporter with R400.
Responding to criticism over this, the secretary-general asserted that he was not trying to purchase a vote. In his view, he was only offering practical help.
“Well, I don’t know what is wrong when I find somebody hungry and she says to us there’s no food in the house and we just contributed whatever. We have contributed R400,” he said.
It appears, more than likely, that Magashule will escape this one without a slap on the wrist. Political analyst, Somadoda Fikeni agrees.
“I don’t expect there will be unanimity even on that, because there are still those who supported former president Jacob Zuma and that was the common language then, which is in conflict with ANC’s efforts to revive its support within the minorities.”