THE AFRICAN National Congress Women’s League has welcomed the decision by the organization to suspend Pule Mabe, ANC’s national spokesperson.
This follows serious allegations of sexual harassment by her 26 year old PA, who also claimed Mabe also deducted her salary without approval.
The league has condemned the alleged harassment and called for Mabe to be suspended. Mabe wrote to his bosses requesting special leave.
A press statement read:” The ANCWL condemns sexual harassment and any form of violence against women children. While we take into account the principles of innocent until proven guilty, the ANCWL is resolute in supporting the victims of sexual harassment and wishes to reiterate this position”.
Mabe will appear before the grievance panel comprising of the organisations heavyweights made of Thoko Didiza- National Assembly chairperson, former Cosatu president S’dumo Dlamini, and Febe Potgieter-Gqubule, today.
“I wrote to the secretary-general of the ANC, comrade Ace Magashule, requesting that I be allowed to take leave until such time that the internal processes on these serious allegations of sexual harassment brought against me, are completed,” Mabe said.
He said he took the decision to ensure “integrity and fairness” in the unfolding processes and to remove any perception of a possibility of interference or influence in the processes.
“It is only fair and prudent that when we are faced with such serious allegations we attend [them] without constraining the integrity and standing of the movement,” he said.
ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte, says the woman, says on one occasions earlier this year, Mabe forced himself on her while she was sleeping.
She also details other alleged instances of similar behaviour by him.
Dakota Legoete, acting ANC spokesperson and NEC member indicated Mabe and the victim will be allowed to bring at least one witness each as well as legal representatives, if they so wish.
“We fully condemn what happened and only at the hearing we shall make a decision going forward having listened diligently to both sides. But as the ANC we take exceptions to such matters because they put the organization into disrepute and also questions the moral of the movement,” said Legoete, who also indicated the reason for not acting immediately after the allegations surfaced, said we wanted to establish the authenticity of these damning allegations.
The identity of the victim has been withheld.
Various civic organizations and political parties had a field day in the office calling for immediate suspension of Mabe, especially ahead of ANC’s January 8 and national elections in 2019, respectively.
Celebrated spin-doctor Zizi Kodwa joins Legoete as acting national spokespersons.