Pretoria - President Cyril Ramaphosa has admitted that the ANC has failed to honour its past promises, saying the governing party does make mistakes because it’s not a machine.
He was speaking to journalists in Polokwane on Saturday after the conclusion of the party’s 110th anniversary celebrations hosted in Limpopo where he also delivered the January 8 statement.
Every year the ANC hosts the event in different provinces to celebrate its existence, and in the process makes policy pronouncements and various service delivery promises to the nation.
However, most of those promises were never realised.
Asked by the Pretoria News why those promises were never achieved by the ANC, Ramaphosa said the party was a living organism that was allowed to make mistakes. It’s not just a machine, he maintained.
“We seek and we work to implement what we have decided. Because we are a living organism, sometimes we get things right and sometimes we don’t get things right. Sometimes there are processes that make the achievement of things we want to see done either difficult, slow or sometimes impossible and sometimes doable,” Ramaphosa said.
“We go through various processes but the intention always is to do the best for our own organisation and to ensure that we achieve optimum levels of performance. Sometimes we fall short. We are a living organism and not a machine.”
Ramaphosa, who is eyeing a second term as ANC leader at the party’s national elective conference in December this year, dodged a question from the media as to whether he would accept nomination for the party’s top job.
He said: “I hear these noises about the second term and you are adding to those noises. I’m listening to all that but that’s what I’m able to do for now.”
The Limpopo ANC has already endorsed Ramaphosa as their preferred candidate to head the ANC for the next five years. Welcoming guests at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane during the celebrations on Saturday, Limpopo ANC chairperson and premier Stan Mathabatha confirmed that the province would be endorsing Ramaphosa.
“We, as Limpopo ANC, say yes to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s second term.
“We stand together in unison as the ANC (and) as the province on the matter. Why fix something that is not broken?” asked Mathabatha.
Ramaphosa’s critics have consistently accused him of using state organs to fight his political battles. This came after some of his political opponents, including suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and ANC MP Bongani Bongo, were charged with corruption and bribery, respectively, in recent years. At the same time, some of Ramaphosa’s allies such as Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane were not hauled before the courts even though they faced allegations of corruption.
Ramaphosa denied that he abused state organs to settle political scores. “I’ve always been on record as saying I would not allow state organs to be used for political squabbles and point-scoring. This is entirely wrong and should not be happening… because where it has been done it has always led to problems and challenges that have divided the organisation.
“These institutions exist and they are independent, and should work without prejudice or favour. We should never ever use state organs to pursue personal vendettas because these kinds of acts lead to dictatorships, (and) because you start wanting to defend yourself using other people. “It also tends to demean the people you have appointed to lead those organisations, using them as pawns, as instruments against your enemies. It’s a very bad culture,” he said.