South Africa: ANC's Duarte Says Rape Complaint Laid Against High-Ranking Party Member

Left: Luthuli House. Top-right: ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte. Bottom right: Composite of Zizi Kodwa (left) and Pule Mabe (right).
23 February 2019

ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte says a rape complaint has been sent to the office of the secretary general against a high-ranking ANC member.

Duarte was briefing the media on Saturday evening on the party's steps to unite the embattled North West provincial leadership.

During a round of questions, Duarte confirmed that a letter had been sent to the office of the ANC secretary general alleging a rape incident against a high-ranking employee in the presidency at Luthuli House.

"The advice we've given the complainant is that she needs to go to the criminal justice system with her complaint," Duarte said.

"It's a bit different where there is a difficulty between staff and membership. This is something that in our understanding happened in a private party setting, of course that's the allegation," she stressed.

The ANC therefore could not probe the facts further, with Duarte saying: "That is the work of the criminal justice system".

Duarte said that the member "had been asked" about the issue, but she would keep to the party line on the matter.

"This is a matter that happened in a private setting, apparently and allegedly, and the lady concerned needs to take this matter to the criminal justice system."

The member, whose name is known to News24, could not be reached after multiple attempts on Saturday evening, as his phone went straight to voicemail.

News24 will update the article once the individual has been given the opportunity for right of reply.

The party's acting spokesperson Dakota Legoete said Duarte's comments reflected the party's stance on the matter.

ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe seemed unaware of the issue when contacted by News24, before the line dropped unexpectedly.

Source: News24

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