Senior ANC parliamentarian Makhosi Khoza has vowed not to die in silence in her fight for the survival of the ruling party.
Khoza, who is known for breaking ranks and publicly expressing her concerns over the state of the ANC, said she did not understand why members of parliament were being threatened with serious action should they vote against the president on August 8.
At the weekend, chairperson of the ANC subcommittee on organisational renewal Fikile Mbalula warned the party would deal harshly with “suicide bombers” who vote to remove Zuma from power next month.
While saying it was a requirement of the party that every member should toe the line in parliament, as they get their mandate from the ANC, Khoza pointed out that MPs must understand that they took an oath of office.
“It does not matter whether the motion has been brought by opposition parties, but what matters is voting with a moral conscience.
“Why was there no issue when some voted against abortion, but now, because it is about the president, we get threatened and labelled suicide bombers,” she said.
She noted that South Africans had already expressed their discontent – on April 27 when they marched in Pretoria calling for the president’s removal – and in the 2016 local government elections when the ANC lost three key metros in Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay.
Something has gone terribly wrong in the ANC, she said.
“With the threats, somehow it feels as if we are being told the ANC’s constitution is more supreme than the country’s constitution.
“Everybody with a sober mind would feel unsafe after the suicide bombers labels and warnings, at a time when the environment is riddled with violence.
“While I fear for my safety, I cannot just keep quiet and watch some trying to redefine the ANC for the sake of their own personal interests.”
Khoza said she had been subjected to ongoing telephonic threats.
“I have been stalked with midnight telephone calls when I was also told they were not going to stop calling me.” – firstname.lastname@example.org