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‘DA trying to take control’: ANC Chief Whip Mdumiseni Ntuli says GNU does not collapse if DA walks away

Written by on June 20, 2024

African National Congress Chief Whip Mdumiseni Ntuli has criticised the Democratic Alliance (DA), saying the blue party is “attempting to take control of the direction” amid the ongoing dispute over parties constituting the government of national unity (GNU).

Following the May 29 general elections, the ANC received its worst election result since apartheid ended 30 years ago in South Africa. The ANC garnered 40% of the vote, losing its absolute majority in Parliament.

However, IOL reported on Wednesday that President Cyril Ramaphosa has officially begun his second term after his party formulated a government of national unity (GNU) incorporating its decades-old rival, the DA and other parties, including the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) and the Patriotic Alliance (PA).

The DA and the PA are currently in a war of words, after the PA, led by Gayton McKenzie, rubbished assertions by chairperson of the DA’s federal council Helen Zille that members of the PA should not expect to be part of the Cabinet without the DA being consulted by Ramaphosa.

Patriotic Alliance leader Gayton McKenzie. File Picture: Ayanda Ndamane / Independent Newspapers

Speaking to Newzroom Afrika on Thursday, Ntuli said the DA was overstating its importance in the government of national unity.

“They are attempting to take control of the direction. When you read articles by Helen Zille and one by Ryan Coetzee, clearly you can see that this is a very condescending kind of a position in which they believe they hold the ANC, and if they go away, the government of national unity is going to collapse. There is no such a thing like that. The government is going to be set up by President Ramaphosa,” he said.

Leader of the Democratic Alliance federal council, Helen Zille. File Picture: Itumeleng English / Independent Newspapers

“Anyone who decides to walk away from that government, it does not mean the collapse of government. It may very well be that if you walk away from that government, you are going to go and mobilise the rest of the political parties to pass a vote of no confidence on the ANC, and, therefore, working towards the collapse of the government.

“But that is not an automatic exercise. Remember there are parties that decided to stay away (from the GNU) because there is the DA, the MK (uMkhonto weSizwe party) and the EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters). The reason why they stayed away is because, in their own view, they would never be party to a process that involves the DA. They are saying the DA is a threat to the ANC, why do you bring them closer to you? We said to them, you are equally a serious threat to us, but we can contain all of you, if you are under one roof,” said Ntuli.

ANC Chief Whip Mdumiseni Ntuli. File Picture

Coetzee is an advisor to the DA’s negotiations team and a former party strategist.

At this stage, Ntuli highlighted that the ANC would be seeking to find common ground with the DA to iron out the issues.

The post ‘DA trying to take control’: ANC Chief Whip Mdumiseni Ntuli says GNU does not collapse if DA walks away appeared first on The Namibian.

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