The ANC said it is not surprised by fiercely critical MP Makhosi Khoza's resignation, saying she had "other ambitions".
In an interview with eNCA, party spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said the ANC "made her" and implied Khoza's resignation was a case of sour grapes over unfulfilled ambitions in the party.
"We have in the past discovered that she harbours uncontrollable ambitions of being [a] minister. Even at the time when President Jacob Zuma did his last reshuffling she had an uncontrollable ambition of being appointed as a minister," he said.
"Unfortunately these are the things that are very dangerous to the ANC when individuals do everything in the ANC to promote themselves," said Kodwa.
Kodwa also said the party had discovered that Khoza's "handlers wanted her to destroy the ANC from within, so we are not surprised".
Khoza, during a speech at the iconic Liliesleaf farm in Rivonia where she announced her resignation, in fact stated outright that the ANC had "made her".
"The ANC single-handedly molded my moral character and conscience. I am a product of years of political classes and Umrabulo. To say I have sucked the political wisdom‚ commitment to the will of the people‚ and the courage to speak truth to power‚ from the breasts of phenomenal women within this movement‚ is not an exaggeration," she said.
An angered -- and in part deeply emotional -- Khoza however said the ANC in its current form had become "corrupt and alien" and ultimately could not self-correct.
She mentioned at lengths names of former leaders and icons of the ANC, including many stalwarts, whom she said had been "insulted‚ belittled and discredited" by the current leadership.
Many of these names of struggle heroes on the wall just outside the room where Makhosi Khoza has quit the ANC. She mentioned many of them. pic.twitter.com/W6RQIgmxn2— Marc Davies (@MarcDDavies) September 21, 2017
"There is no chance in today's ANC to survive unless you have the 'smallanyana' skeletons in the closet. This ANC will not self-correct because the politics of patronage run deeper than roots to the core of the earth. Corruption has been institutionalised," she said.
While emphasising that the ANC still has "very good people", she lambasted the party's leadership, saying corruption had become endemic particularly in its upper echelons.
If we were to prosecute all known corrupt cases including those implicated in the Gupta e-mails‚ almost 80–90% of the ANC leadership at all levels of government would have to replace their shiny tailored suites and pretty dresses with orange overallsDr Makhosi Khoza
The former ANC MP made it clear that speculation over her potentially joining the DA was unequivocally false, as were rumours she would start her own political party.
Nevertheless, she did not rule out the idea altogether, saying for now she needed "time to reflect".
She also did not rule out ever returning to the ANC, stating resolutely that unless the party started taking corruption seriously and firing those implicated, she would not return.
Khoza: As long as the ANC is not decisive on corruption (which means people must be fired for corruption), I will not go back. @HuffPostSA— Marc Davies (@MarcDDavies) September 21, 2017