Friday, October 10, 2008



Kenya Times
Nairobi, Kenya
Friday, October 10, 2008

Story by: Xinhua and Agencies

The leader of South Africa’s official opposition, Helen Zille, says she would welcome a split in the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party.

She was responding to former Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota’s threat on Wednesday to form new party. "We’re seeing a non-racial alignment... on the basis of principles and that’s a very good thing," she tolda news agency. But ANC leader Jacob Zuma said a new party would be not threat to the ruling party in polls due next year.

"This splinter party will never be a real threat. Here we are talking about a party that has not been formed as yet and if it were to be formed, it will have very little time to mobilise support before the elections," South Africa’s Witness newspaper quotes him as saying.

In the end there will be a convergence of all of those parties like ourselves Mr Lekota is a close ally of former South African President Thabo Mbeki who was forced to step down last month. The governing party is divided between supporters of Mr Mbeki and Jacob Zuma, who won a bitter party contest to become ANC leader last year. Ms Zille, who heads the Democratic Alliance, said if Mr Lekota did form a new party it would not threaten her party, which believes in "the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law and due process". More In Print Edition