Corruption within the African National Congress is so rife that it can no longer be regarded as a perception says party secretary general.
Speaking to party supporters in Evaton‚ south of Johannesburg on Tuesday‚ Mantashe warned that corruption cannot be allowed to continue as it hampers government’s ability to deliver services.
“The ANC should not be corrupt and if the ANC is corrupt‚ then something has gone wrong. At this stage‚ we cannot say that it (corruption) is a perception. There are people in the ANC who loot the state and when you loot‚ you destroy the ability of the state to deliver services‚” Mantashe said to loud applause from community members and party supporters.
Mantashe was in the area to drum-up support ahead of the party’s 105th birthday celebrations to be held at Orlando Stadium.
His frank admission struck a cord with the audience‚ with some shouting that they had been reduced to living like farm-dwellers without services.
However‚ it was not the first time that Mantashe has spoken out against corruption within his own party. He previously blamed the party’s misfortunes in the August local government elections on corruption.
Mantashe acknowledged that not much had been done by government to develop Evaton. “We can’t leave Evaton as it is much longer‚ with no streets. We can’t complain that there is no money because there is money but the problem is ‘how do we use it’‚” he said.
Millions in development funds under the auspices of the Evaton Renewal Project were allocated during the administrations of former Gauteng premiers Mbhazima Shilowa and Nomvula Mokonyane. But this does not appear to have resulted in much change. The project was intended to abolish bucket toilets in the area as well as build houses‚ streets and a proper sewerage system.
Sunday’s celebrations at Orlando Stadium will also serve to celebrate the 100 year birthday of former ANC president Oliver Tambo.
Mantashe warned that persistent corruption within the party could not be allowed to continue any longer because it posed a risk to the legacy of Tambo.
“When we celebrate Oliver Tambo‚ we celebrate ANC values. You can’t associate Oliver Tambo with corruption because Oliver Tambo exemplified ethics and revolutionary morality of the ANC‚” said Mantashe.