Ahead of a crisis meeting of the tripartite alliance that starts tomorrow, President Jacob Zuma followed his own party in expressing “grave concern” about the leaked Gupta e-mails and a threat by trade union federation Cosatu to intensify attempts to oust him.
But alliance members seem committed to saving the grouping – with or without Zuma.
The ANC yesterday noted “with grave concern” the reported allegations contained in the leaked e-mails, saying they contain worrying claims about the relationships between government and private interests.
“The ANC views these allegations in a very serious light and if left unattended‚ they call into question the integrity and credibility of the government and the use of state resources under the direction of, or to the benefit of, private interests,” said the party.
“Such matters cannot be allowed to fester in the public domain. Accordingly‚ the African National Congress calls on government to urgently seek to establish the veracity of these claims and explanations from those implicated.
“The ANC further reiterates the resolution of the national executive committee, calling for the establishment of a judicial commission of inquiry into allegations of state capture, without delay.”
Cosatu spokesperson Sizwe Pamla said the allegations had to be investigated, adding that the ANC has also realised that these issues not only affect the party, but the country as a whole.
Pamla said the federation’s stance on Zuma remained unchanged and that plans are afoot to intensify calls for the president to step down.
ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said that despite the current challenges, the ANC-led alliance will “live forever”.
He added: “I have no reason to doubt that one day we will emerge stronger than before because we have been through challenges before.
“As alliance partners, we need one another and we have to talk. We will not be able to survive without one another.”
Asked if there was still hope for the alliance, Pamla said they remained hopeful that common ground would be found.
Asked what he thought would happen should the alliance fail to reunite, Pamla said: “We can’t be naive and say the alliance is not going through challenges, but we believe that if all parties concerned can invest as much as we have, we can still emerge united.
The SA Communist Party was not immediately available for comment at the time of going to press.
This week, it was reported that more than 100 000 e-mails and documents relating to the Guptas and their business dealings were in the hands of the amaBhungane journalistic investigative unit and the Scorpio investigations unit of the Daily Maverick website.