Ramaphosa defends CR17 campaign, denounces war talk in Parliamentary Q&A session

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi 3h ago

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President Cyril Ramaphosa has defended the CR17 campaign, saying that MPs should look at crafting a law that would regulate the contest of internal party elections. Ramaphosa said that there was no such law at the moment, adding that the matter of the CR17 campaign was before the High Court. He said he would leave it to the court for a decision.

Ramaphosa was responding to questions during a question and answer session in the National Assembly on Thursday.

Ramaphosa also spoke against those calling for war after the violence that broke out in Senekal last month following the death of a farmer. Two suspects have since been arrested and charged in connection with the man’s murder.

In the ensuing confrontation, police deployed more officers to quell the violence. Police Minister Bheki Cele and State Security Agency Minister Ayanda Dlodlo visited the area. Deputy President David Mabuza told the National Council of Provinces last week that the issue of land must be addressed in the Free State town and other areas. Parliament was currently busy with processes to deal with land reform.

The Expropriation Bill to deal with the expropriation of land in the public interest or for a public purse was tabled in Parliament recently.

The Restitution of Land Rights Bill was halted by the Constitutional Court four years ago and ordered amendments.

But in his question and answer session on Thursday Ramaphosa said he would tolerate any “war talk” in the country.

Some politicians have been accused of stirring up violence by calling for war.

“I would say that no one in South Africa should be talking about war. War is a very dangerous phenomenon and I think those who are talking about war are playing with fire. They should see what a war does in other countries. Where war is unleashed against citizens there is nothing that is benefitted by anyone,” said Ramaphosa.

While addressing the questions raised, Ramaphosa made sure to steer clear of the upcoming case against ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule.

He said it was an internal party matter.

A question relating to Magashule’s arrest and subsequent court appearance was posed by the DA’s John Steenhuisen. Steenhuisen had wanted to know what action would be taken against Magashule after he was charged.

Ramaphosa said the matter would be handled internally by the ANC.

“The issue of the leaders of the ANC is a matter that is being handled by the ANC. The ANC, through its own processes, is dealing with those matters and like I have said before with all these matters I have been reporting on let us wait for all these processes to unfold and in time these matters will be addressed and everybody will get to know how the ANC itself is addressing those matters,” said Ramaphosa.

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