Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa issued a stern warning on Wednesday night to those attempting to use their deep pockets to influence leaders within the ruling party.
“The ANC is not for sale. The ANC refuses to be captured… Those who want to capture the ANC and influence it… you have come to the wrong address,” he said.
His statement comes after questions arose about President Jacob Zuma’s close relationship with the Gupta family last week. The wealthy family had reportedly exercised undue influence by offering senior ANC members Cabinet posts.
During the ANC summit for academic and business, Ramaphosa told attendees the ANC had set up a structure that was going to tackle the issue of state capture.
He said people were already streaming into ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe’s office with information.
“That structure has already started work. It is lodged in the office of the ANC Secretary General on the 6th floor of Luthuli House.
“People are now streaming in. They are coming in and they are going to put issues on the table,” he said.
However, said Ramaphosa, ANC members who claim to have been approached with such offers must present concrete evidence.
“Now we are dealing with it in a structured manner in an ANC way, moving away from headlines.”
He said the party’s national executive committee would then debate the evidence, address the allegations and move forward.
“People may have had their own notions of what should happen post-NEC. What we know is that we are dealing with matters thoroughly with critical analysis in a structured and disciplined way.”
The ANC NEC met last weekend after Deputy Minister of Finance Mcebisi Jonas made the shocking announcement that he had been offered the top job in the ministry shortly before the then minister of finance Nhlanhla Nene was given the boot.
Another ANC member, former MP Vytjie Mentor, had earlier made claims that she had also been approached by the Gupta family to take over the public enterprise ministry just days before then minister in the department Barbara Hogan was axed.
ANC Gauteng chairperson Paul Mashatile, who was also at the summit, said the party had discussed allegations against the Gupta family at length. The NEC sat for two days discussing the Gupta situation and state capture, he said.
“For two days [we] discussed only these things, what do we do if people are concerned about the Guptas. The message that we bring to the country is that we are very serious about this.
“Our state will never be captured by anybody. We are very determined that something like that will never happen. The ANC is in good hands, we are there,” he said.
Mashatile encouraged ANC members who have been approached by the Guptas to report this to Mantashe’s office. “If you are approached by someone in an unethical manner, Luthuli House is on Sauer Street.
“The office of SG is on the sixth floor. Please do come,” Mashatile told attendees.
Ramaphosa said the issue went beyond the Guptas.
“It is not only the Gupta family. There are a number of others as well who have either tried to capture the state or in the process of trying to capture the state… Stop in your tracks we will not allow that,” Ramaphosa said.