The uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) says it has declined an invitation to attend the SA Communist Party’s (SACP) 14th national congress now under way in Boksburg, Johannesburg, because of the SACP’s stance on President Jacob Zuma.
In a statement released on Monday, the association expressed its annoyance with the ANC’s alliance partners, the SACP and labour federation Cosatu, for meddling in the governing party’s internal matters, such as their repeated calls for Zuma to step down amid a slew of corruption allegations.
“The current unfortunate path that the SACP has taken to disregard the well-established tradition that alliance partners do not prescribe to each other about internal organisational matters by trying to prescribe to the ANC about who should be its president, is not [conducive] for our attendance,” the MKMVA said.
The ANC’s former military wing, led by staunch Zuma supporter Kebby Maphatsoe, said it took “umbrage to the SACP’s support for the similarly unacceptable decision of the Cosatu to ban President Zuma from attending their meetings”.
“MKMVA values the tripartite Alliance, but we believe that it is critical for the SACP and Cosatu to return to the fundamentals that made the alliance such a great success and formidable force in our liberation struggle.”
The SACP will elect new leaders at the conference, but it is general secretary Blade Nzimande and his second deputy, Solly Mapaila, who are expected to be reelected unopposed. Jeremy Cronin will hang up his deputy secretary position after 22 years.
The congress will also discuss calls by the SACP in Mpumalanga and the Young Communist League for the party to contest the upcoming 2019 general election separate from the ANC, among other issues.
Read the full statement below:
The MKMVA will not be attending the SACP national congress. pic.twitter.com/1Y8gUMAUmp
— Scapegoat (@AndiMakinana) July 10, 2017