It’s fake news! That’s how acting Mpumalanga ANC provincial secretary described a message circulating on social media purported to be from the organisation’s Secretary General.
The message claiming seven ANC leaders failed a vetting process, emerged on Whatsapp groups on Sunday morning.
Following this, acting provincial secretary, Lindiwe Ntshalintshali, released a media statement saying the message aimed to tarnish her reputation and that of her colleagues.
Her name is one of the list of seven.
“The ANC in the province distances itself from this malicious message and fake news that seek to tarnish the reputation of the seven (7) candidates mentioned in the circulating message,” said Ntshalintshali.
All political parties were due to submit their lists of candidates for the national and provincial legislatures to the Electoral Commission when the message surfaced.
It includes two MECs and a member of the legislatiure.
“The following candidates have not passed their vetting process as candidates to the Provincial Lagislature:
“Vusi Shongwe, Lindiwe Ntshalintshali, Mandla Msibi, Gilion Mashego, Geaneth (sic) Thabethe, Bheki Lubisi, Million Makaringe.“
”These candidates have been withdrawn in the ANC list submitted to IEC due the bad vetting results. Regards ANC SG office” reads the message.
The message does not disclose the reasons for the bad results, however, some of the people in the list have a questionable past.
Lubisi, who is from Nkomazi local municipality, was arrested for kidnapping, assaulting and killing Tshepo Magagula (21) in 2015 for alleged robbery.
In 2017, Public Protector, Busi Mkhwebane criticised Thabethe for her conduct during a legislature meeting.
She described her and EFF provincial leader, Collen Sedibe’s conduct as “traumatising” after Thabethe threatened to beat Sedibe until he “poops in his pants” during a Legislature meeting in 2017.
Thabethe is a member of the current provincial legislature.
Meanwhile Ntshalintshali also warned that the organisation would not communicate decisions through Whatsapp.
“The membership of the ANC and the community is advised that the ANC Secretary General has not officially communicated the outcome of the vetting process and we would like to put it on record that the ANC does not communicate internal processes and matters on WhatsApp with unofficial contact persons,” said Ntshalintshali.
She said her organisation will communicate the vetting results through a “credible communication” once the vetting process has been concluded.
“The ANC will communicate the official results of the vetting process through a formal and credible communication when the process has been officially concluded,”
On Wednesday it was the last day for parties to submit their lists of candidates to the Electoral Commission.