ANC chief whip Stone Sizani addresses the media on the public protector’s Nkandla report, in Cape Town on Wednesday. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON
Stone Sizani. Picture: TREVOR SAMSON

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe on Friday had some advice for former ANC chief whip Stone Sizani when dealing with the media – they will "trick" you into saying things.

"He said things, he’s in trouble now ... you never talk to the media haphazardly they will trick you into trouble," he told reporters at the Bree Street taxi rank in Johannesburg where he was doing a walkabout ahead of the voter registration weekend.

"That is the advice I will give him when I meet him."

The ANC parliamentary caucus earlier distanced itself from comments Mr Sizani reportedly made during an interview published in the Mail & Guardian.

Mr Sizani reportedly said the ANC parliamentary caucus always wanted President Jacob Zuma to pay back the money for Nkandla.

"We have been consistent in our position that President Zuma needed to pay a portion of the Nkandla money in line with the public protector’s decision," Mr Sizani said this week.

In a lengthy interview about the parliamentary process of considering Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report on upgrades to Mr Zuma’s Nkandla home, Mr Sizani said: "The ad hoc committee report in Parliament supported the public protector’s recommendation that the president must pay back a reasonable amount.

"There were no two ways about this. If you disagreed with the public protector, you needed to take her report for a [judicial] review," said Mr Sizani.

The office of the chief whip said Mr Sizani’s comments did not reflect that of the ANC parliamentary caucus.

"The ANC in Parliament reiterates its view that the matter of Nkandla, including its handling by Parliament, is among the matters currently before the Constitutional Court and a judgment in this regard is pending," Moloto Mothapo said.

"We await the outcome of the Constitutional Court which we shall implement as a sound and authoritative constitutional guide on these matters."

The ANC announced earlier this week that Mr Sizani was resigning from Parliament. Mr Sizani said he was going to take up the position of South African ambassador to Germany.

Mr Sizani and the ANC have dismissed rumours that he was leaving his position because he had been critical of how the Nkandla matter had been handled.

ANC communications manager Keith Khoza announced earlier on Friday that he was resigning from Luthuli House to go work with newly appointed Gauteng Human Settlements MEC Paul Mashatile.

When asked about the resignations, Mr Mantashe said they were promotions not resignations.

"Keith is going to work with Paul, do you call that a resignation? He leaves our office to go and work with Paul who has been redeployed as an MEC in Gauteng, is that a loss to the ANC?" he asked.

"Stone Sizani is asked to go be an ambassador in a senior diplomatic posting, which is a promotion ... and people say ‘ja you are dumping him’. If you dump people upwards well that’s it."