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'We can’t be a nation of fraudsters or corrupt people'

Former KwaZulu-Natal Premier Senzo Mchunu says that the tainted image of the ANC must be rectified.

FILE: Senzo Mchunu. Picture: The KZN Office of the Premier Facebook page.

DURBAN - Former KwaZulu-Natal premier Senzo Mchunu says the African National Congress (ANC) is hurting itself and will eventually die if corruption and inefficiency is not dealt with.

Mchunu was speaking in the lower South Coast region, which had its executive powers stripped two weeks ago.

The ousted provincial ANC chairperson spoke frankly on issues of state capture, the vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma and the upcoming elective conference.

He says the call for radical economic transformation is correct but won’t be successful if the Guptas and state capture clouds continue to hang over the party.

Mchunu, who has now officially endorsed deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa in his presidential campaign, says the tainted image of the organisation must be rectified.

“Comrades, we can’t be a nation of fraudsters or corrupt people.”

Mchunu also reminded the audience about OR Tambo’s words on the ANC's future.

As the ANC succession debate heats up, Mchunu says the moral high ground the party once enjoyed must be restored.

The recent leak of a tranche of emails from the Gupta brothers, rich Indian businessmen who are friends of Zuma and whose business empire is central to allegations of state capture, has rocked the ruling ANC.

Zuma, who has steadfastly denied any impropriety in his relationship with the Gupta family, has survived several calls from party insiders to step down before his term as state president ends in 2019.

Meanwhile, Atul Gupta, whose family business empire spans media, mining and technology, told the BBC that the leaked emails suggesting that his family used links to Zuma to win contracts and influence decisions were fake.

"There's no authenticity of Gupta leaks at all," he said, without suggesting who might have forged them or addressing specific allegations in the paperwork.

Senior members of the ruling ANC party have accused the three Gupta brothers of using their relationship with Zuma to wield influence and win business.

Additional reporting by Reuters.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)

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