14 Oct 2008

Former Defence Minister to be suspended from ANC

7:08 am on 14 October 2008

South Africa's ruling African National Congress has decided to suspend former Defence Minister Mosiuoa Lekota after he threatened to form a breakaway party.

Mr Lekota quit as defence minister in protest at the party's ousting of former President Thabo Mbeki last month.

Last week he indicated that the ANC is close to a split and that he may form a new party ahead of next year's elections.

The ANC also said it would also suspend Mr Lekota's former deputy, Mluleki George, who joined him in threatening to split from the party, and said other dissidents would face the same fate.