ANCWL wants Kodwa to address rape allegations, dismisses claims of factional campaign
ANC Women's League (ANCWL) president Bathabile Dlamini says she would like nothing more than to hear the party's acting spokesperson and head of presidency, Zizi Kodwa, directly address the allegations of rape brought against him.
She made the comments to News24 on Monday, following Kodwa's statement dismissing claims that he drugged and raped someone as a "dirty tricks campaign by cowards operating from their factional dark corners, using women to fight or neutralise me".
On Saturday ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte confirmed to journalists that a rape complaint had been sent to the party in a letter against a high-ranking party member.
While News24 had opted not to name him, Kodwa himself issued a statement on the matter on Sunday denying the claims.
The ANC on Sunday also registered its own concern over the claims, saying they were the "antithesis" of what the party stood for.
The ANCWL, which has often been accused of being factional, launched a scathing attack on Kodwa, calling for him to step aside while the matter unfolds.
"Everyone is saying this matter is factional, it can't be factional. Abuse of women is abuse of women, if it was factional we would not have intervened in the Dros matter, in the Port Elizabeth matter of Timothy Omotoso," said Dlamini, referring to recent high-profile sexual violence cases.
"The only thing I prefer to hear is a statement about the allegations, not sweeping statements made to apportion blame," Dlamini said.
Dlamini also took a swipe at the media, labeling it as "problematic" in the matter.
"They jump into conclusions and want to compromise the ANCWL. They belong to factions," remarked Dlamini.
She said the issue of factionalism had nothing to do with the league.
"He must explain what he means by saying this thing is factional because we are going to hear a litany of men saying the issue is factional," she said.
The ANC has also asked the complainant, whose letter on the incident has been circulated on social media, to take the matter to the police.
Kodwa's friend, Papa Leshabane, who was at the upmarket apartment in Sandton when the alleged incident took place and who at some point liaised with both the complainant and Kodwa, has chosen not to comment on the claims.
"Anybody can say whatever they want but I have decided to watch from the sidelines. I am choosing to be quiet," he told News24.
"I have nothing to say," concluded Leshabane.