African National Congress presidential hopeful Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma says what happened in Parliament on Tuesday August 8 where several ANC MPs voted with the opposition in an attempt to unseat President Jacob Zuma cannot be ignored.
The ANC narrowly defeated opposition parties in a motion of no confidence against Zuma following a secret ballot on the issue.
Opposition parties only got 177 votes in favour while the ANC managed 198 against the motion. Nine MPs abstained.
“We saw how our country was on tenterhooks in Parliament,” Dlamini-Zuma said, referring to the sitting.
The former African Union Commission chairperson made the remarks during an ANC Free State cadres’ assembly which took place over the weekend.
ANC treasurer general Zweli Mkhize and the party’s deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte also addressed the crowd.
Dlamini-Zuma admitted that several mistakes had been made in the party and that some had the right to be frustrated over issues, but cautioned against using those emotions to turn against the party.
“No matter what, we cannot be so angry with the ANC that we walk away from it,” she said.
The presidential hopeful admitted that there were difficulties in the movement but said it was nothing new. She told guests that what mattered was how the issues were managed.
“Mistakes will always be made no person who can say they have not made mistakes. The question is how we deal with these mistakes,” Dlamini-Zuma said.
Quoting the ANC’s longest serving president Oliver Reginald Tambo, Dlamini-Zuma said that there was a lack of progress at times, and while there were mistakes, they were never in doubt that the people’s cause would triumph.
“If we are doubting the people’s cause, it means we are doubting the ANC,” she said.
She urged those at the cadres’ forum to do what needs to be done for the cause of the people to triumph.
“United we stand, divided we fall. It doesn’t matter how angry we are, it must not be enough to walk away from the people’s triumph.
”Young people are still unemployed, people still being raped or killed; although the ANC government has done a lot, there are still kids who have to swim to get to school; we can’t say the struggle is over.”
Dlamini-Zuma also urged members of the party at the forum to discuss issues around discipline and the party’s values.