The African National Congress (ANC) says although it accepts former President Thabo Mbeki’s utterances that its 2007 elective conference outcome was based on lies, it now wants to concentrate on 2019 while Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says Mbeki needs to also accept his own mistakes.
President Jacob Zuma defeated Mbeki 10 years ago, paving the way for his ascension to power.
The ANC’s Zizi Kodwa says at this point, the ruling party wants to concentrate on learning from its mistakes and not dwelling on the past.
“That conference as a consequence, a lot of comrades were left outside and then went off to form their own organisation. What are the lessons from there? How do we make sure that such an incident does not happen again?”
Cosatu’s Sizwe Phamla says although the trade union agrees that Zuma was a bad choice, Mbeki should not have used the platform to exonerate his own leadership.
“Of course it was a way to sanitise his own legacy and trying to cash in on the fact that we’ve the president whose worse, but that’s not what the country needs. The country doesn’t need to be recycling old stories.”
Phamla says although Mbeki told the truth about Zuma being a poor leader, this is not what the country needs.
“And he never acknowledged one little thing that he did wrong, which tells you that it is just an attempt to sanitise his own legacy. Of course, benefit from the fact that President Jacob Zuma has turned out to be a worse president than president Thabo Mbeki was.”
Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema was one of those who led Zuma’s presidential campaign, alongside former Cosatu General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi and South African Communist Party General Secretary Blade Nzimande.
Both Malema and Vavi have since apologised for their campaign, while Nzimande has said he felt betrayed by Zuma.