According to the report, several ANC national executive committee (NEC) sources told the newspaper Zuma has openly sidelined Mantashe.
“If the president says something and the secretary general says something else, we will listen to the president,” said an NEC member.
Another said the cause of the tension was Zuma’s attempt to “save his legacy” and to “get more friends.”
According to the M&G, Zuma sees Mantashe as a threat to him and his succession plans for when his term ends in 2017. This is because ANC members in the Eastern Cape, Mantashe’s home province, have declared their support for the secretary general to become the next deputy president. But, this is at odds with Zuma’s ambitions.
Mantashe told the newspaper a campaign had been initiated to create a rift between him and Zuma. He said this was something the NEC members wished for.
“That is what they are praying for,” he said.
He said the reason behind the growing tension was his tendency to voice his opinion on ANC matters.
“I am organisational, I am not petty,” he added.
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