African National Congress (ANC) secretary Ace Magashule has defended his “racist” remarks saying that there is nothing factually wrong about what he said.
Magashule caused controversy within party structures after telling the crowd not to vote for “umlungu” a Zulu word for a white person, a comment branded as racist by the ANC Veterans.
He said: “Don’t ever vote for umlungu (white person), a white person will never change the lives of black people, they have oppressed us.”
In reaction to the statement by the party’s elders calling for President Cyril Ramaphosa to act against him, Magashule said there were white people voting for the ANC.
“Our main hope is the black vote and there is nothing wrong to say the DA represents the white interest, the elite and the privileged, so what is wrong with that?” asked Magashule.
“I have explained that the ANC is a non-racial organisation. There are white progressive democrats who have been voting for the ANC and who will continue voting for the ANC. There are lots of challenges – people have no houses, no electricity – but there is hope and they all have hope in the ANC.”
“In fact, they think that the ANC is in charge of the Western Cape because they are telling us that there is no service delivery. They think that the ANC is in charge, they don’t differentiate between national, provincial and local governments. That is why this time around we are definitely confident that the ANC is going to take the Western Cape.”
The ANC defended Magashule’s comment. Acting ANC national spokesperson Dakota Legoete said it was not a racist comment as Magashule was only denouncing parties that “protected and defended” the interests of the minority.
“According to the explanation we received, it is not a racist statement,” said Legoete.
“We are a nonracial organisation that would not want racial inequity to thrive. We have always believed it is wrong for any human being to be categorized according to race or belief.”
Meanwhile, political analyst Daniel Silke believes the Democratic Alliance (DA) will continue its dominance in the Western Cape in the upcoming general election.
Silke was reacting to the claim by Magashule that the opposition in the province was set to grab the province from the governing DA after telling voters that the DA had failed to deliver to the people in the province.
Silke said none of the opposition parties posed a real threat to the DA, which had entrenched itself in the province.
According to him, the ANC had not done sufficiently to endear itself to the Western Cape electorate and, therefore, there was nothing to warrant the voters to change their minds about throwing their electoral weight behind the DA.