ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe. Picture: Gallo Images
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe on Tuesday criticised Nedbank chairman Reuel Khoza for his comments about a lack of leadership in South Africa.
"I would be very worried if the business community begins to think that it has a monopoly of understanding of political leadership," Mantashe told reporters in Johannesburg.
Khoza, writing in Nedbank's latest annual report released on Friday, said South African's "strange breed" of leadership needed to adhere to the institutions that underpinned democracy. The political climate was not a picture of an accountable democracy, he said.
"Our political leadership's moral quotient is degenerating and we are fast losing the checks and balances that are necessary to prevent a recurrence of the past."
Khoza said South Africans had a duty to build and develop the nation, but also to hold their leaders accountable.
"We have a duty to build and develop this nation and to call to book the putative leaders who, due to sheer incapacity cannot deal with the complexity of 21st century governance and leadership, cannot lead," said Khoza.
Mantashe said the ANC had tried to call Khoza on Tuesday morning to "get a sense of what he means".
He said Khoza was tasked by financial services company Old Mutual to find a buyer for the company.
"He has not found that buyer. That is the challenge of business leadership who cannot do what they are told to do," said Mantashe.
"Now to deflect [attention away from] him he talks about political leadership."
He said the sale fell through under Khoza's leadership.
"What kind of leader would allow this to fall through? He's actually on the wrong platform. He must talk about business and Nedbank in particular," Mantashe said during a press briefing at the party's headquarters in Johannesburg.
Mantashe was joined by ANC president Jacob Zuma, his deputy Kgalema Motlanthe, treasurer Mathews Phosa, ANC national chairwoman Baleka Mbete and deputy secretary general Thandi Modise. -Sapa