Date:11 December 2016 - By: Ndivhuwo Musetha
The Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veteran Association (MKMVA) in Vhembe is concerned about the outcome of the upcoming national elections.
During the MKMVA Cadre Forum held at the council chamber of the old parliament buildings in Thohoyandou last Saturday, it was conceded that the ruling party might be embarrassed in the next elections like what happened in the last local elections. The event was also attended by other alliance partners, Cosatu, SACP and the ANC.
Although no municipality has been lost to an opposition party in Vhembe, the forum agreed that the fact that the support of the ruling party had gone down in the last elections was a clear indication that "there might be a disaster waiting for us in the next elections," a delegate said.
Mr Erasmus Phophi, SACP leader and a former leader of the ANC, who delivered the keynote address, said that the MKMVA in Vhembe was concerned that some seats had been lost to opposition parties in the last elections. "We did not do well in local government elections. We had our own meeting two weeks ago where we resolved that factions are costing us as a party," he added.
He added that during the meeting they had proposed and adopted a motion that all branches must be allowed to nominate candidates of their own choice without inference. “We want people to be chosen according to their skills, not slates," said Phophi.
Mr Timson Tshililo, acting president of Samwu, who spoke on behalf of Cosatu, said that there was a problem in the ANC leadership in Vhembe. He mentioned that scandals happening at national level were also costing the party. "It is true that we took a decision to support Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa for the presidency in the coming elections. It is surprising that the ANC Youth League and ANC Women's League attack us every time we issue a statement and they are not being reprimanded for that,” he said.
Mr Peter Muleya, who spoke on behalf of the SACP, lashed out at regional ANC leaders and accused them of destroying the party through corruption. "Go and tell these ANC leaders in the region that we are saying we are tired of their corrupt practices that are costing us elections," said Muleya.
Muleya also took swipe at former Makhado mayor David Mutavhatsindi and accused him of being responsible for the Vuwani crisis "because he failed to defuse it." He added that any ANC leader and mayor of a municipality that was affected by a strike but failed to defuse the situation must be blamed.
Mr Dowelani Nenguda, deputy chairperson of the ANC in the region, conceded that all was not well in the region.