Myburgh dissects his book Gangster State -Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

Journalist Pieter-Louis Myburgh has released a new book titled Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture.

Read: Pieter-Louis Myburgh responds to Magashule's claims that he is a liar

The book details how the African National Congress (ANC) secretary-general Ace Magashula allegedly used undemocratic means to cling to power in the Free State.

Also read: Myburgh defends his explosive book on the alleged corruption by Ace Magashule

Myburgh sits down with Eusebius McKaiser to dissect the pages of his latest book,

In the first part of the book, Myburgh accuses Magashule of exaggerating his struggle credentials.

It was a very important issue to unpack because if you look at the history of the ANC and how it as an organisation bestows a certain amount of political capital upon those who can prove to have played very prominent roles in the struggle environment or at least join their proverbial hall of fame by becoming treason trialists.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

So when people make claims, someone like Magashule says for instance, that he was a treason trialist and when such claims are repeated on the ANC's website, that feeds into an aura and reputation that favours the person and furthers his political career.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

It is very concerning when one discovers that some of those claims are untrue.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

He notes that one of the first major claims made about Magashule is that he was one of the founding members of the Congress of South African Students (Cosas).

People who were on the ground with Cosas, with the Azanian Students Organisation (Azaso) and the United Democratic Front (UDF) very prominently dispute Magashule's claims that he was a founding member or a prominent member.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

So the chapter by no means alleges that Magashule played no role whatsoever in the struggle against apartheid but it does raise some issues around the claims he made on the hand of source interviews and other documentation in regards to what he exactly did.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

On countless occasions has described himself as the founding member of the UDF for instance, documentation on early UDF meetings, interviews with former UDF members point to the exact contrary. He wasn't a senior member of that organisation at that stage and we need to interrogate these issues.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

Because it speaks to a person in power and his ability to truthfully portray his own past.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

Another claim that Myburgh looked at is that Magashule was militant at the University of Fort Hare and was involved in potentially planning a plot to assassinate Lennox Sebe and that he was also charged with high treason.

Myburgh says the label as a treason trialist, affords one a considerable amount of political capital within the ANC.

Magashule went on to claim that he was charged with high treason following an attempted assassination of Sebe at the Fort Hare campus.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

He says he then discovered records that disputed this claims.

In short, he was arrested for public disturbance and they effectively got a comparatively light sentence compared to being tried for treason.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

Myburg notes that the ANC's about-turn in telling Magashule to face corruption allegations is interesting as his book demonstrates that it was the governing party that sponsored his career.

The apparent latest strategy by the ANC for Magashule to deal with the fall out of the book and other corruption allegations is an interesting one.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

But at the end of the day, when you look at the case of Ace Magashule and the problematic political career that he has had in the ANC, the two are inextricably linked.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

This is a story about the ANC and it is a story about Magashule. One could say this a story of the ANC told through an examination of an individual like Magashule.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

He adds that the Magashule being snubbed by different ANC leaders shows that those leaders knew that there were great concerns around the secretary- general.

In his book, Myburgh also speaks about how when Magashule was appointed as Free State premier, he syphoned what was meant to be R1 billion for low-cost housing.

The Free State department of human settlement features very prominently in the book because so many of these Ace-linked deals occurred from that department.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

It is very interesting to note that the auditor-general, consistently highlighted incredible levels of unlawful expenditure at that department and at some point during Magashule's tenure, up to 90 cents of each rand was spent irregularly by the province.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh, Author - Gangster State - Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture

Listen below to hear how Myburgh further describes Magashule's involvement in capturing the Free State:


This article first appeared on 702 : Myburgh dissects his book Gangster State -Unravelling Magashule's Web of Capture


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