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Derek Hanekom DOOM does not work Bra Jacob Zuma


When Derek Hanekom stood up on Saturday to deliver the stinging motion of no-confidence in President Jacob Zuma — largely anchored in the Constitutional Court's Nkandla judgment in March that Zuma "violated" his oath of office — he was fully prepared for the political consequences.
It's been a long slog to get to this point, but senior African National Congress (ANC) leaders say even though Zuma was saved at the last minute and will survive to fight another day, the defences of the National Executive Committee (NEC) have been breached. The debate about Zuma's future is no longer be taboo.

And Hanekom was the one that broke the line.
It's been a long slog to get to this point, but senior ANC leaders say even though Zuma might be saved at the last minute and survive to fight another day, the defences of the NEC have been breached.
The Minister of Tourism is no shrinking violet and his standing within the organisation is unquestioned. From Afrikaner stock (he matriculated at Hoƫrskool Jan van Riebeeck in Cape Town), Hanekom got involved in the struggle at an early age and helped smuggle young activists across the border to Botswana during the turbulent 1980's. He was part of the first democratic cabinet as minister of land affairs and has been serving as tourism minister since 2014. He has also been a member of the NEC for a number of terms.
Hanekom has been in the wars previously — he was the intransigent chair of the ANC's national disciplinary committee that eventually expelled Julius Malema and was the subject of many personal and political attacks from Malema's backers.
Hanekom has been in the wars previously — he was the intransigent chair of the ANC's national disciplinary committee that eventually expelled Julius Malema
The challenge that faced him and other like-minded NEC members over the weekend was that the numbers simply didn't add up. Mavuso Msimang, party stalwart and part of the veterans' delegation that met with the ANC's leadership, told HuffPost SA there are many in the NEC that believe Zuma's game is up — but they're in the minority.
Looking at the maths, it's easy to see why.
The NEC consists of 106 members — 86 directly elected at the Mangaung Conference in 2012, and the rest ex officio members, including officials from the leagues and provincial chairpersons.
Hanekom obviously did his calculations, saw a number of Zuma's backers were at the Sellenbosch wedding of Mzwandile Masina, the mayor of Ekhuruleni, and thought a Sunday blindside might do the trick. But he needed a lot of luck on his side.
The NEC is packed with individuals who have Zuma to thank for their livelihood: almost the whole of Cabinet, as well as numerous provincial office bearers and MPs who serve on the NEC. And most of them are in their positions because of party lists, decided at Luthuli House and cleared by Zuma.
The NEC is packed with individuals who have Zuma to thank for their livelihood: almost the whole of Cabinet, as well as numerous provincial office bearers and MPs who serve on the NEC.
Looking through the list of names there are very, very few independents. These include Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the chair of the African Union commission and a Zuma ally, Billy Masetlha, the former spy-turned-businessman, Tito Mboweni, ex-governor of the South African Reserve Bank, Sankie Mthembi-Mahanyele, a former deputy secretary-general, Joel Netshithenzhe, Thabo Mbeki's former policy guru, Max Sisulu, former speaker of Parliament, and Sue van der Merwe, a former deputy minister.
They are vastly outnumbered by Zumaphiles and deployees in Lynne Brown, Siyabonga Cele, Rob Davies, Thoko Didiza, Bathabile Dlamini, S'dumo Dlamini, Ayanda Dlodlo, Malusi Gigaba, Tina Joemat-Pettersson — the list goes on and on.
Beyond the numbers, Hanekom had a second problem: there is no precedent in the NEC where the fitness to hold office of the party leader has ever been put to a vote.
Beyond the numbers, Hanekom had a second problem: there is no precedent in the NEC where the fitness to hold office of the party leader was put to a vote.
The NEC prides itself on debating issues until consensus is reached. When Thabo Mbeki was recalled in September 2008, there was unanimity that his continued deployment as head of state was untenable. No vote was called for, and even then deliberations went on into the early hours before a delegation was dispatched to tell Mbeki his fate.
It's one thing to move a motion of no-confidence, it's quite another to convince the whole meeting — including the chairperson — to break with tradition and force an antagonistic and divisive vote which might alter the course of the organisation.
And the ANC in its current form isn't known for taking bold decisions, even though Hanekom tried to force its hand.
And the ANC in its current form isn't known for taking bold decisions, even though Hanekom tried to force its hand.
Hanekom, according to an old comrade, knew he had some support, but not enough. This did not deter him, and he decided to move ahead anyway. "He did it as a matter of principle. He doesn't care about the political consequences," said the comrade.

Zuma might have the numbers in the NEC now, but it won't always be this way, especially after the Hanekom intervention.
Khabza Mkhize

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