Fransman agrees to step aside for sake of the party
Fransman reportedly says he won't fight a decision that he step aside pending a sexual assault probe.
CAPE TOWN/JOHANNESBURG - African National Congress (ANC) Western Cape Chairperson Marius Fransman has reportedly said that he won't fight the ANC's decision that he step aside pending an investigation into allegations of sexual assault against him.
The party says it expects Fransman to understand why he has been told to step aside.
Fransman has reportedly said that he won't fight the ANC's decision that he step aside.
News24 is reporting that Fransman will be taking leave during this time, with him claiming it's in the best interests of the party.
The National Working Committee wants Fransman to immediately step down pending the finalisation of a probe into allegations he sexually assaulted his personal assistant earlier this month.
The woman opened a case with North West police as the alleged incident happened while they were travelling to Rustenburg to attend the ANC's 104th birthday celebrations.
The ANC's provincial executive committee had referred the Fransman matter to the party's integrity commission.
ANC Deputy Secretary-General Jessie Duarte says, "We are dealing with it from a values perspective and we are saying while the integrity commission is looking at the matter, he must step aside now. We are not waiting for the criminal charge to be preferred or anything like that. It could happen but the stepping aside happens immediately."
A letter has also been sent to provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs, warning he would be suspended for a second time over the alleged assault of a researcher employed by the ANC last year.
ANC TIGHTENS REGULATIONS
At the ANC's 2012 Mangaung Conference it was resolved that officials accused of crime or corruption should consider stepping down from their posts temporarily, until their names were cleared.
Despite that resolution, several charges were laid against ANC officials and they stayed on in their positions.
But at the party's national general conference last year, this resolution was tightened as delegates said it was unacceptable for the name of the ANC to be dragged through the mud any longer.
Then John Block resigned as Northern Cape ANC leader after being found guilty of corruption.
This decision could thus strengthen that precedent and make it harder for anyone else to cling to office if they face serious accusations.
WC ANC TO GO AHEAD WITH RALLY
The ANC in the Western Cape will go ahead with a planned rally in Grabouw tomorrow even as the province's leadership appears to be in deep trouble.
The provincial ANC says national chairperson Baleka Mbete will give the keynote address at the rally.
It's unclear whether Fransman or Jacobs will attend.
Duarte says, "The NWC has directed Marius to stand aside while the processes by the integrity commission is ongoing."
Fransman has previously dismissed the claims as part of a malicious smear campaign.