Carl Niehaus, the Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) spokesperson, stuck to his promise to protest against President Cyril Ramaphosa when the ANC’s National Executive Committee met at the weekend.
Despite the rain and poor weather conditions, Niehaus stood outside the Nasrec centre where top ANC leaders met and called for Ramaphosa to go.
And he did it mostly alone – like he did in Durban when the ANC KwaZulu-Natal elective congress was held in July.
Despite a chorus of anti-Ramaphosa sentiment sweeping the country and in the ANC itself amid the Phala-Phala saga swirling around the president, Niehaus received very little support from his comrades in the MKMVA and the ANC.
— Carl Niehaus (@niehaus_carl) November 13, 2022
And Twitter had a field day.
Referring to him mostly as “Oom” (uncle) , Tweeps mocked Niehaus for his one-man protest against Ramaphosa while some were sympathetic to his cause, calling him a true revolutionary.
ANC comrades are cowards it takes Carl Mpangazitha alone to say CR must go!! Where are MKVA soldiers? Cowards of a note
— Condo Stan (@stan_condo) November 13, 2022
According to a report on IOL, Niehaus’s protest was an attempt at exercising his freedom of expression by urging Ramaphosa to resign from his position as ANC president, accusing him of bringing the ANC into disrepute and contributing to the country being in the bad state it’s in.
Twitter is great for comedy and Carl, you never fail to deliver 😂
— Scott Gibson (@scotty_gibson) November 13, 2022
“Ramaphosa must go he has brought not only the ANC but the country to disrepute not only through the Phala Phala scandal which is not only a national, but an international scandal which touches on issues of money laundering, illicit international finances, tax evision, abduction and torture … the whole range,” Niehaus said.
Great crowd. Your support is overwhelming. I am sure CR is shivering in his boots. pic.twitter.com/gICFfj2odj
— Jason Penrose (@jason_penrose23) November 13, 2022
Soon to be minister of justice pic.twitter.com/RKaUrO2VOj
— 🌍Mosotho®♋ (@mosotho35) November 13, 2022
Niehaus said: “Anything less than the ANC NEC meeting this weekend deciding that Ramaphosa must immediately step down as president of the ANC, will be a moral and political failure of epic proportions. It will be unforgivable and if that happens every single truly revolutionary member of the ANC will have to throw down the gauntlet and demand that the whole NEC together with Ramaphosa must resign immediately.”
I doubt that there is anyone who take you seriously not even your comrades
— Manager (@Da_Vince2) November 13, 2022
Despite an onslaught from his detractors in the ANC, Ramaphosa survived an intense NEC meeting at the weekend where he was made to defend himself against the Phala Phala scandal in which millions of US dollars, stuffed in cushions, were stolen from his farm.
You belong here 👇 pic.twitter.com/f47WzpwC5F
— Nancy Malatjie (@MaladzhiNancy) November 13, 2022
Several party leaders called for him to step aside at the meeting but Ramaphosa and his backers pushed back against the calls.
Ramaphosa closed the meeting on Sunday afternoon without mentioning Phala Phala or the calls for him to step aside.