Earlier today an article profiling Zareef Minty of the Patriotic Alliance was met with accusations flung at both Minty and Wits Vuvuzela.
Several Witsies took to Twitter to contest some of the positions Minty said he had held in the Student Discipline Committee (SDC) and within the African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) some time ago.
Minty had said he was currently chair of the Student Discipline Committee and had previously been a treasurer for the Wits ANC Youth League. His statements were contested. Image: Twitter
In response to the allegations, Minty apologised on Twitter and clarified what he meant to say to Wits Vuvuzela reporters.
In a telephonic interview with Wits Vuvuzela earlier this evening, Minty he said, “I refuse to apologise for the SDC chair statement,” he added that he didn’t realise he needed to differentiate his position as chair of SDC representatives.
With regards to being a treasurer for the ANC Youth League he said he was willing to concede the error and apologise because he should have pointed out that he was “asked to assist as treasurer for a period of time”. He said the person who held the position at time was under review for non-performance, this person being Klaas Mokgomole (@Brainwasher1).
Minty said the complaints hurled at him were “really silly.” He also told Wits Vuvuzela that he would provide a statement but none has been received.
Third year law student, Zareef Minty, is the national youth president for businessmen Kenny Kunene and Gayton McKenzie’s new political party, the Patriotic Alliance (PA).
The slight looking 20-year-old Minty, who is also a fashion designer said the PA was youth-centred and had a strong focus on giving second chances to the reformed, like two of its own founders.
Second chances and new alliances
“If Nelson Mandela could have that chance to be reformed (sic) coming out of jail and having an opportunity, then we should allow Kunene and Gayton to have the same thing.
“In the same way a student has been charged with something should be allowed to have a future as well,” said Minty.
“Ex-cons” Gayton McKenzie, president of the PA and general secretary Kenny Kunene, met each other in jail and following their release in 2003, became business partners.
JUGGLING: National youth president for the Patriotic Alliance, Zareef Minty, explains how he manages between being a law student, political figure, fashion designer and author. Photo: Pheladi Sethusa
Minty met the two through his clothing line partnership, after Kunene was asked to be an ambassador for Minty’s own fashion label, Self Made Billionaire (SMB). “Kunene liked the idea of an up and coming clothing brand worn by celebrities,” said Minty.
He said the party also included more young people in its decision-making. He said four of the party’s 12-member national executive committee were under the age of 25.
“We are the only party out there who allows youth to have a platform in the NEC. The ANC and the Democratic Alliance has a separate Youth League so you don’t get young people in parliament,” he said.
Minty is sixth on the PA’s parlimentary list, which means if they manage to get six seats after the national elections this year, he could be sitting in parliament and not in stuffy lecture rooms.
The party’s focus on the youth and a “practical approach” to politics are what Minty believes will make the PA “a better alternative to the ANC”, which he said was policy heavy with little to no implementation thereof.
[pullquote]”…if they manage to get six seats after the national elections this year, he could be sitting in parliament and not in stuffy lecture rooms.”[/pullquote]
He believes that PA would be able to relate mostly to the born-frees because it was a party that did not have any “baggage”.
The PA’s campaign trail on campus has come with its own set of issues, “Until we have permission to be a club or society on campus we can’t really go out in a group and recruit people. We have been working by going person to person, trying to get them to join,” he said.
The PA, often referred to as the “coloured” or “gangster party”, was founded in Paarl in the Western Cape three months ago and plans to contest in the upcoming elections.
Minty said they have a good chance of having up to six seats in parliament after this year’s elections.
Minty is treasurer of the Wits Law Students’ Counsel and the chairperson of the Student Discipline Committee, which influenced his alignment with the PA and their belief in reforming and empowering the previously charged.
Before the PA, he was part of the ANC Youth League on campus where he took up position as treasurer but the PA presented him with an opportunity for national leadership
Along with the multitude of things Minty has on his plate this year, he plans to publish a motivational book, Empire by March. Let’s watch this space.