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ANC's top brass to intervene in problems facing WC leadership

The party’s national leadership has called for a meeting with the provincial executive committee.

ANC supporters listen to Baleka Mbete speak at the 104 birthday rally in Grabouw. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The African National Congress (ANC) top brass will be in Cape Town today to intervene in problems facing the Western Cape's leadership.

The party's national chairperson Baleka Mbete confirmed this during the ANC's birthday celebrations in Grabouw over the weekend.

Two of the party's top officials, including provincial leader Marius Fransman, are being investigated by police.

Mbete said the party's national leadership has called for a meeting with the provincial executive committee.

"To get a direct sense of what are the issues and to then come out and announce and lead in relation to that."

Fransman has been directed to step aside, while the ANC's integrity commission probes allegations he sexually assaulted his personal assistant.

At the same time, provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs faces suspension for allegedly assaulting a researcher employed by the party last year.

Mbete insists the problems affecting the province's leadership have not filtered down to branch level.

She has urged branches to focus on wresting control of municipalities from the Democratic Alliance come the local government elections.

Mbete said the national leadership will sort out all issues.

"But at the provincially executive committee level, indeed the media has been reporting quite wildly about some of the challenges and that's why the national leadership is coming down to get a direct sense of what are the issues."

The party said it's still focusing on reclaiming areas in the province.

It said it wants to use the Overberg district as its springboard.

Last year, the party won a by-election in a Democratic Alliance (DA) stronghold in Grabouw.

Grabouw councillor John Michels said people want better service delivery.

"They're not worried about what's going on in the ANC in the province or in the ANC nationally, they're looking at what the ANC is offering on a local level. Local government is the party nearest to the people."

But Mbete told members they cannot afford to be distracted at this stage as there's too much work to be done.

"It's very clear what our mission is in 2016. We can't be demoralised, there's too much work to do."