When asked if Mbeki could be relied on to ask for votes, Johannesburg mayor Parks Tau only said: ‘We will keep you posted’.
Not literally that he joined EFF but his not being keen to campaign for ANC means a lot, that is why we ask did he join EFF?.
The ANC in Gauteng remained tight-lipped yesterday about whether former president Thabo Mbeki would assist the party in its election campaign.
Johannesburg mayor and the ANC regional chairperson Parks Tau met Mbeki on Monday at the Thabo Mbeki Foundation in Killarney, Johannesburg. The Citizen has reliably learnt that Mbeki, who was recalled nine months before the end of his term in 2008, is not keen to canvass for the ANC.
Tau said the meeting with Mbeki was important.
“It was a particularly important period because we are literally running two election campaigns,” Tau told The Citizen yesterday. “We are running a campaign to lead the city of Johannesburg in as much as we are running a campaign to lead the world. We thought it would be important that we keep him updated about both campaigns but also about the work we have been doing.”
When asked if Mbeki would campaign for the ANC, as the date for the local government elections draws closer, Tau would only say: “We will keep you posted.” Mbeki’s spokesperson, Mukoni Ratshitanga, could not be reached for comment at the time of going to press.
Meanwhile, the Gauteng ANC’s fear of losing power in the coming elections saw the party roping in veteran Winnie Madikizela-Mandela to endorse the party publicly yesterday Party leaders, including Tau and ANC Gauteng chairperson Paul Mashatile, paid Madikizela-Mandela homage at her house in Orlando West, Soweto.
Madikizela-Mandela, who has been ill for some time, was given a bunch of flowers and a basket of fruit and snacks. She came out of the house to speak to journalists.
“I am very happy to see all of you,” she said. “I have not seen you for so long; I am actually delighted to see you.”
She acknowledged that the ANC was facing difficulties but pleaded with South Africans to vote for the party in the election.
“I am here to tell my people to do the right thing and vote for the right revolutionary movement,” said Madikizela-Mandela.
“The only thing that will save South Africa is to support the ANC.”
Madikizela-Mandela expressed concern about political killings, particularly in KwaZulu-Natal.
“There is this barbarism that we are faced with in South Africa, which is foreign to our elections,” she said.
Since April, as many as five or more senior party members have been killed in KwaZulu-Natal. Madikizela-Mandela said the ANC in any case was going to win the election despite all the problems it was facing.
“We are so used to them,” Madikizela-Mandela said.