The Big Read: The Guilt Of The Gutless Three

STRAW MEN: President Jacob Zuma with Gwede Mantashe, Cyril Ramaphosa and Zweli Mkhize.

 One day, when the history of South Africa is written, three men will be remembered for having sold their organisation, their people, and their country down the river.

Last week they stood by and watched as President Jacob Zuma handed their country to the Gupta family – and opened the floodgates of corruption, looting, and descent into Hell.

They knew the cabinet reshuffle last week, conducted in shame in the middle of the night, had nothing to do with efficiency or improving the government. They knew Zuma had nothing to do with the list of new appointees. They knew the whole thing was a sham, a con trick, a robbery.

How do I know all this? Ramaphosa, Mantashe and Mkhize told us that this is what happened.

On Saturday, Mkhize said that “unlike previous consultations which take place with senior officials of the ANC during such appointments and changes to the composition of the national executive, the briefing by the president left a distinct impression that the ANC is no longer the centre and thus depriving the leadership collective of its responsibility to advise politically on executive matters”.

Read that again. Mkhize is saying that “the ANC is no longer the centre” of power.

That means that someone else, an unelected entity, is running this country. The ANC is no longer in charge. He is saying the party you voted for has been usurped by someone else.

I have not read anything as chilling as that with regard to my country in my entire life.

A coup, says the treasurer-general of the governing ANC, has taken place. All he needed to do was add the obvious: the Guptas have effected a coup.

Ramaphosa confirmed this on Friday when he said: “It was not a consultation because he [Zuma] came with a ready-made list.”

Earlier on Friday, Mantashe had said: “The cabinet list was developed somewhere else and given to us to legitimise.”

These three are the most powerful people in South Africa. But when their country was stolen they just sat and watched.

So now, after reflecting, will they do something about it? Will they stand up and speak? Will they repudiate this sham, captured, administration whose sole intent is to steal from the fiscus and make Zuma, the Guptas, and their families rich?

Not a chance. In fact, they are going to continue to give Zuma legitimacy.

How do I know? They have told us so.

Asked if he would resign, Ramaphosa said: “No, I will not. I’m staying to serve our people in the government. I’ve made my views known. There are quite a number of other colleagues unhappy about this situation.”

Mkhize said he wished Zuma’s new gaggle of cabinet appointees “well in their new responsibilities”.

What is the man smoking?

Mkhize, Ramaphosa and Mantashe are deluded if they think Malusi Gigaba is at the Treasury to drive growth. He is there to enrich and protect the Guptas and push through a corrupt Russian nuclear building programme.

If he is not, then let’s see him continue with the work of Pravin Gordhan and Mcebisi Jonas in the two court matters implicating the Gupta family. He won’t. The truth is that there is more integrity in Jonas’s little finger than in Gigaba’s entire body. That’s why Jonas and Gordhan were fired. They are good, honest men who want to do the right thing for their country.

Ramaphosa, Mantashe and Mkhize are cowards. When the time came for them to show some backbone and, as Mantashe likes to put it, “give leadership”, they were found wanting.

Zuma has never been more vulnerable. His support in the ANC’s national executive committee is just over 50%, with many prepared to jump ship. The SA Communist Party has told the man to his face that he is a liar and a thief and that he should step down. His support is made up of gangs of thieves in the kleptocratic provinces of Mpumalanga, North West and the Free State.

I understand that there are many sensitivities. But these three leaders need to follow Gordhan’s example and show us that “our souls are not for sale . our country is not for sale”.

They need to stand more clearly, more resolutely, and call on the ANC leadership to support them in getting rid of the man who has sold their country to the Gupta family.

They must ask themselves this: What would the great ANC presidents Tambo, Mandela, Luthuli, Mahabane, Seme, Dube and others do?

They would gird their loins, they would use their voices, they would speak, and speak, and rage against the dying of the light in our beloved South Africa.

Ramaphosa, Mantashe and Mkhize can redeem themselves.

They must call an emergency meeting of the ANC national executive committee. They must have one item on the agenda: the recall of Jacob Zuma. They must use every ounce of their being to get every single national executive committee member to support the motion. Then they must bring it to a vote.

Zuma will go.

He must go. He is a disgrace to the ANC, to us, to our people.

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