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The Congress of the People is disturbed by a statement issued by Mr Mluleki George today in relation to the Elective Congress of Cope. While we all agree that such a congress is a non-negotiable in the contract that COPE made with the people of South Africa, the manner in which Mr George made such a pronouncement is counterproductive under the current circumstances in the organization.
COPE would like to place on record the following:
1. The St Georges policy conference was not "adjourned" to reconvene to elect leadership. Such an utterance demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of the constitution of COPE. The elective Congress is a duly constituted meeting of properly mandated delegates, not a mass rally of loyal supporters of a faction. As per the ruling of the South Gauteng High Court and the Cape High Court, the hijacked policy conference is null and void, and not an adjournment as stated by Mr George. To proceed under these false premises is blatantly in contempt of several rulings.
2. For Mr George to unanimously act in isolation from the recognized structures in COPE is divisive and factionalist. It is this tendency that has plagued the organization up to this point. The CNC of the party will decide what action to take regarding Mr. George's conduct.
3. Mr George claims that the venue for the Congress is paid for. If it is, it has been paid for from funds not declared to the party. This kind of factional funding, including paying for membership of branches is exactly what COPE is opposed to. Mr. George will have to account for how the funding was raised for the Congress venue.
4. This statement was issued in outside of duly mandated and recognized communications structures of COPE. Mr. George was warned by the National Office Bearers on a previous occassion to desist from such actions.
5. The NCPC of the party was cancelled by the Acting General Secretary of the party. Whatever meeting Mr. George attended that took the decisions he claims were made, it was not a COPE meeting.
The National Office Bearers of COPE will convene a special meeting of the CNC to consider this blatantly divisive behaviour of Mr. George.