It's not so much about what the ANC in Gauteng said about Zuma rebel Mondli Gungubele but how they said it.
The manner in which the African National Congress has handled different cases of what they label as "defiance", for example with Makhosi Khoza compared to Gungubele, shows a party that treats one member differently from another.
The ANC in Gauteng on Tuesday released a statement regarding Gungubele, a party member and Gauteng deployee in parliament who publicly claimed he will vote for the President to go in a motion of no confidence. "I find it difficult to have confidence in the president", Gungubele has said.
ANC MPs Makhosi Khoza and Mondli Gungubele may be the only ones to have said so publicly, but they are not alone in their opposition to President Jacob Zuma in the ANC's Parliamentary caucus, Business Day reported.
In their statement, the branch said Gauteng provincial office bearers (POBs) met with Gungubele following his comments and "pronouncements".
"After affording comrade Gungubele an opportunity to explain himself, he was advised and requested to desist from making public pronouncements on the matter," the ANC in Gauteng said in a statement on Tuesday.
Gungubele apparently committed not to make any further public comments on the matter.
In a recent interview with News24, Gungubele said the ANC's stance for people to toe the party line was "schizophrenic".
Different approach to Makhosi Khoza
Now, compare Gauteng's treatment of Gungubele to the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal's initial statements on Makhosi Khoza, who has since been charged for ill-discipline after calling for the president to step down. She has also been outspoken on corruption and state capture.
In a statement on July 19, the ANC in KZN referred to Khoza in urging other members to avoid any temptation of "seeking cheap popularity" and "pandering to reactionary popular sentiments".
"The latest public pronouncements of comrade Makhosi Khoza represented the worse form of arrogance which is completely at variance with the conduct expected from those representing the African National Congress," the party said.
"The ANC KwaZulu-Natal is of the firm view that [Khoza] has now crossed the line and must immediately face the consequences of her actions."
August 8 vote
Other ANC members who have spoken against the president, like Pravin Gordhan, have not fallen victim to any ramifications at all.
But both Khoza and Gungubele have been wrapped over the knuckles by ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe as well as party chief whip, Jackson Mthembu.
Mthembu, in a statement on Monday, called on the party to "act against" Gungubele's "ill-disciplined behavior".
The ANC is whipping is members into line ahead of the big vote on August 8, and as Mantashe said in a press conference on Monday, the party is "not planning" for Zuma to be voted out.
However, it seems the harshness of the ANC's reprimand depends on who the member is and which province they come from -- perhaps a province that unwaveringly supports the Zuma faction or a province that has come out in favour of Ramaphosa.Suggest a correction