The Congress of the People (COPE) has placed its leader Mosiuoa Lekota on suspension, the party’s deputy president Willie Madisha announced on Monday, 29 August 2022.
As part of his suspension, Lekota will also not be allowed to take part in party activities, including in Parliament.
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MOSIUOA LEKOTA GETS THE BOOT
COPE says it lacks confidence in Mosiuoa Lekota’s leadership and had repeatedly asked him to rest, which he refused to do.
“The Cope national leadership advised him on several occasions that given his lack of energy and strength to lead the party at the moment, he must step back. Although he agreed on all those occasions, he did not do so,” Madisha said during a media briefing in Kempton Park.
According to party spokesperson Dennis Bloem, Lekota has been supporting corruption and the removal of elected individuals, something which COPE has strongly condemned.
Bloem adds that Lekota could have avoided being suspended had he listened to the party’s advice.
“Mr Lekota could have avoided this situation if he was willing to listen to advise, his deputy president comrade Willie Madisha, the secretary for election comrade, Mzwandile Hleko, and myself spoke to President Lekota and advised him to say that he is no longer the energetic “Terror” Lekota. He must consider retiring because his health is also not on his side anymore but Comrade Lekota did not want to listen to this advice.”COPE spokesperson Dennis Bloem
Reasons for his suspension have been cited as follows:
- the role he plays in dividing the party
- frequent meetings he convenes to form parallel structures in COPE, which are made to organise and compete against each other instead of building and uniting the party;
- promoting actions against which COPE was formed, which include corruption and the removal of elected leaders and representatives such as councillors; and
- frail health conditions which make him unable to perform and attend to the work of parliament.