Tourism Minister Lindiwe Sisulu “desperately” wants to become the president of South Africa, and is willing to do anything to achieve her objective.
That’s according to ANC veteran Mavuso Msimang in response to Sisulu’s latest opinion piece on Wednesday, in which she lambasted Msimang for saying her initial article – published last week on IOL criticising the constitution and judiciary – was an “extraordinary attack on South Africa’s constitution”.
Following widespread criticism from several quarters of society over her comments, including from Acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo, Sisulu slated Msimang, calling his views “ludicrous” and intellectually bankrupt.
Sisulu said in part: “I have chosen to write to dispel the false narrative that Msimang and other reactionaries seek to suppress robust and honest debate within the ANC.
“At the same time, they enforce censorship over the members who freely express their opinions about the state of our democracy and other matters of vital interest to the ANC.”
But in an interview with Radio 702 on Thursday morning, Msimang said he was not “going to dignify the minister’s response with an answer.”
Sisulu ‘desperately’ wants to be president
He said, with the ANC set to elect new leadership in December, it was clear that Sisulu was campaigning for the governing party’s presidency once again as she did in 2017.
“It is behind the controversy that is currently raging… is the ambition of an individual who desperately wants to become the president of South Africa in the future. To this end, she is willing to use all means, fair and foul, to attain the objective,” Msimang said.
He also questioned the timing of Sisulu’s controversial remarks about the country’s constitution, political leadership, rule of law, and the judiciary.
“Its timing, given the then-impending conference of the ANC celebrating its 110th birthday in Polokwane, it was clear that releasing this article at this stage was bound to deepen the already existing divisions within the organisation.
“Secondly, the attack on the leadership, as in how the organisation is led, was just unprecedented [and] extraordinary.”
Zondo on Wednesday hit back at Sisulu for her remarks, saying she had “crossed the line” and that her comments amounted to what he called “an unwarranted attack on the country’s judiciary”.
In response, Sisulu said she had noted Zondo’s comments, saying “they would be engaged with at an appropriate time in an appropriate platform”.
“I’m in consultation with my legal team,” she said through her spokesperson Mpumzi Zuzile on Wednesday.