State Capture Debate: ANC Chief Whip Accused Of Conniving With Opposition


A group of African National Congress (ANC) MPs seen as supporters of President Jacob Zuma, on Monday, turned against party chief whip Jackson Mthembu for allegedly colluding with the opposition to schedule a state capture debate.

During an interview aired on Monday evening by ANN7, the aggrieved MPs slammed Mthembu, state capture evidence leader Advocate Ntuthuzelo Vanara and state capture inquiry into Eskom.

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The ANC backbenchers‚ who included Mervyn Dirks from KwaZulu-Natal‚ Sibusiso Radebe from Mpumalanga and Peace Mabe of Gauteng insisted during the interview that an inquiry into state capture that does not include “white monopoly capital” is just a mere “whitewash”.

Responding to the allegation on Tuesday, the office of Jackson Mthembu said his colleagues’ allegation is not only malicious, but also very dangerous to the functioning of a healthy multi-party democratic Parliament.

Mthembu’s statement added:

“The office of the ANC chief whip has noted the unfortunate public utterances by five ANC MPs accusing the ANC chief whip, comrade Jackson Mthembu, of having colluded with the Democratic Alliance to table today’s subject for discussion in the National Assembly.

Through its conventions and practices, Parliament has over time established a rotational basis within which political parties introduce motions for debate in the National Assembly.

The insinuation that the majority party in Parliament can direct the opposition [as to what] what their motions for debate ought to be, and vice versa; is not only malicious, but also very dangerous to the functioning of a healthy multi-party democratic Parliament.

The ANC chief whip has escalated the unfortunate and defamatory utterances of these MPs to the ANC.”

The ANC chief whip did not also spare the ANN7, as he took to the social media and accused the broadcaster defaming him during the interview it conducted with the six ANC MPs.

Mr. Jackson has since raised a formal complaint with the ruling party’s leadership structure on the defamatory utterances by the six ANC MPs.

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A Parliamentary debate on state capture, sponsored by the DA chief whip John Steenhuisen, was debated in the National Assembly on Tuesday. The debate was centered on the “scourge of state capture” and Parliament’s duty to hold the executive to account.