As part of restoring the ANC’s former glory there must be a decisive lifestyle audit for all leaders across the board, starting with the national leadership, to remove corruption.
This is the suggestion from South African Communist Party second deputy general secretary Solly Mapaila, who spoke at the Joe Slovo memorial event in Avalon cemetery in Soweto on Friday.
Other interventions, said Mapaila, should include “disbanding factions, intensifying the fight against the capture of both the movement and the state and therefore dealing with the looting of public resources, corruption and patronage”.
“We cannot allow those kind of things to happen,” Mapaila said several times in a heated speech, each time drawing applause from the hundreds who attended the event.
Introducing the keynote address by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor agreed with Mapaila.
“There is no qualms with the lifestyle audits among some of us. So we are waiting for that audit,” said Pandor.
She added that the fate of the ANC was in the hands of members and not leaders.
“The power is in your hands, so use that power to rescue the ANC. Use your power to bring the ANC back to the people,” she said.
She said ordinary members had “given too much power to leaders and that is why they think you are for sale”.
Pandor said the ANC deserved “leaders of integrity, who will not be corrupt, who are tried and tested and made a solid contribution to our country and the building of this democracy.
“We do not want corruption and people using public resources for their pockets. We do not want leaders who take us for granted”.
She said members knew those who were rotten “because they come to you with bags of money. Let us expose them”.
Ramaphosa said lifestyle audits would be an indicator to the voters that the ANC was serious about fighting corruption.
“We are saying lifestyle audits must happen now,” said Ramaphosa.
He said the SACP must not apologise for its strong views on the state of the ANC and “things that you were articulating here you should not be sorry for”. “These are the sort of statements that will take us towards building our movement and making it stronger. It is when we engage in criticism and self criticism that we become a much stronger movement,” he said.
“When there are wrong things happening within our ranks let us not keep quiet. Let us talk and talk the whole truth and not lies,” said Ramaphosa, adding that “the SACP was historically known for being direct, forthright, principled and ideologically clear”.