South Africa


From Ace to Zuma: Student body provides shot in the arm for embattled cadres

From Ace to Zuma: Student body provides shot in the arm for embattled cadres
Supporters of Ace Magashule secretary general of ANC outside the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court at a previous appearance. Photo:Felix Dlangamandla/Daily Maverick

The Congress of South African Students has joined the Radical Economic Transformation group in support of ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and former president Jacob Zuma.

Announcing the Congress of South African Students’ (Cosas)  affiliation to the Radical Economic Transformation (RET) group on Wednesday, Cosas National Convenor Katleho Mangoejane said students’ support for Magashule stemmed from ANC secretary-general’ stellar work in education during his tenure as Premier of the Free State.

“As Premier of the Free State Ace Magashule did a lot of things in education. He prioritised education. He ushered a lot of development in schools, that’s why we feel the need to defend him,” said Mangoejane.

Mangoejane suggested that students had obtained free education, bursaries and democracy through the leadership of Jacob Zuma and Magashule. “That is why we will defend Ace Magashule and ‘president’ Zuma,” said Mangoejane. 

“We feel if they attack Ace, they attack education. If they want to test us, as we say, they must touch Ace Magashule and they must touch Jacob Zuma”.

He said the hounding of some ANC leaders began with late former struggle icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, then Zuma, and now, Magashule.

“As learners, we will defend the revolution with our bodies because we do not have guns, we don’t have anything. What we have is the masses,” vowed Mangoejane.

Magashule is due to appear in court on corruption-related charges on Friday. There has been a build-up of RET forces activity as the court date drew nearer and ahead of Zuma’s scheduled appearance before the Zondo commission.

Cosas joined the RET Free State Forces on the morning of Wednesday 17 February 2020 in their support for Zuma and Magashule. It was the third known gathering of the kind in almost as many days. On 15 February, members of the MKMVA, some members of the Nkandla community and some ANC members camped outside Nkandla in support of Zuma.

Later that day, the Gauteng RET forces gathered at the Booysens Hotel to also drum up support for Zuma and Magashule.

We won’t allow Zuma to be arrested or Ace to step aside, says Carl Niehaus

ANCYL Deputy Regional Secretary Thabo Baleni said, “We are saying we are pledging our unreserved support to the secretary-general of the ANC, comrade Ace Magashule.” Baleni said White Monopoly Capital (WMC) agents were behind conspiracies whose sole aim was to unseat the secretary-general of the ANC.

He said these “agents” sought to achieve this by also “going to sleep with the judiciary”. No further details were provided.

The attacks by both RET groups were identical, and the judiciary was not the only organ of state or body to be targeted. Baleni said the media was biased. He said the Zondo commission should practice transparency and allow former Eskom and Prasa executives Brian Molefe and Lucky Montana respectively to testify. Molefe has testified previously and indications are that he will be recalled. Montana is among individuals who the commission has indicated they would like to hear from. 

He said the charges against both Zuma and Magashule were politically motivated and should be thrown out.  

“The charges on comrade Ace border on a failure to exercise oversight comrades. The weapon of the media has ensured that there is no fair trial for our leaders,” Baleni claimed.

He said other ANC leaders who are alleged to have committed serious crimes were not pursued in the same manner as Magashule and Zuma. This has been the driving narrative for members of the RET. Their reasoning is that the fact that other ANC leaders are also implicated in serious wrongdoing should exonerate Zuma and Magashule.

“Magashule is always painted as not being a worthy ANC leader. He is always painted as not being worthy of being ANC General Secretary, and it’s all done through the weapon of WMC, the media,” claimed Baleni.

The event was also dominated by much singing of struggle songs and chanting. Three big ANC banners bearing the faces of Zuma and Magashule, and also one bearing the face of Oliver Tambo were used to hold the thin line in the front.

A few people wore South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) T-shirts, while others were partly or fully clad in MKMVA uniform. A few other people carried placards bearing Magashule’s face. DM


Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Jax Snyman says:

    Employ a teenager whilst they know everything.

  • Miles Japhet says:

    There are none so blind as those who do not wish to see!!
    The media gives them far too much airtime for fringe groups with no constituency.
    Baseless claims, the race card and other laughable statements. They are part of the problem and not part of the solution for growing our economy and uplifting the poor.

    • Rodney Weidemann says:

      well their favourite tactic is ‘whataboutism’ – which is the same tactic consistently employed by the Q-Anon lunatic fringe in the US – so I guest that helps to explain what a bunch of losers they really are…

  • Meirion Griffiths says:

    And these people are educated – really?

  • Rodney Weidemann says:

    “We feel if they attack Ace, they attack education. If they want to test us, as we say, they must touch Ace Magashule and they must touch Jacob Zuma” said Mangoejane.

    Clearly, Ace didn’t do his job very well, because if this lot actually were educated, they would understand how the rule of law works…

  • Dennis Bailey says:

    Sooner they arrest the SG and JZ better for all so we can move to life and death and relevant politicking that not about a bunch of called the ANC.

  • Mario Cremonte says:

    (COSAS) is an anti-apartheid Student Organisation established in 1979 in the wake of the June 16 Soweto Uprisings in 1976 in South Africa, the formation of COSAS from exile by President Oliver Tambo.
    He must be turning in his grave!

  • Mark Ogle says:

    The one who pays the piper, calls the tune?

  • Johan Buys says:

    Ja, about as many of these Students are actual students as Veterans that could fight a cold.

    Enough with tolerating Zuma supporters. Call their bluff. We are supposed to have laws that do not allow for private militia.

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