NYDA plum post sows divi­sion

While ANC Youth League mem­bers vie for a place on the Na­tional Youth De­vel­op­ment Agency board, its top brass are ru­moured to be in con­flict over who should take the po­si­tion of chair­per­son

CityPress - - News - HLENGIWE NHLABATHI and AN­DISIWE MAKINANA news@city­press.co.za

Com­pet­ing in­ter­ests within the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) over who should clinch the plum po­si­tion of chair­per­son of the Na­tional Youth De­vel­op­ment Agency (NYDA) have al­legedly sparked in­fight­ing be­tween the league’s pres­i­dent, Collen Maine, and sec­re­tary-gen­eral Njabulo Nzuza. This comes as youth league deputy pres­i­dent Des­mond Moela is set to lose out on the post be­cause he does not pos­sess the aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tions re­quired for it.

Who­ever is in charge of the NYDA gets to con­trol the R409 mil­lion bud­get al­lo­cated to the youth de­vel­op­ment en­tity.

Par­lia­ment kicked off the process of ap­point­ing the new board mem­bers in Novem­ber last year, when it ad­ver­tised the po­si­tion by call­ing for ap­pli­ca­tions and nom­i­na­tions.

City Press has learnt Maine wanted his deputy to be the next chair­per­son of the NYDA board, but one of the re­quire­ments for NYDA mem­ber­ship is a three-year de­gree at the very least. Moela does not have one.

Ac­cord­ing to ANCYL sources, Nzuza ques­tioned Maine’s ra­tio­nale be­hind lob­by­ing for Moela, who did not pos­sess a sin­gle de­gree.

Moela’s high­est aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tion is a ma­tric cer­tifi­cate, but he is pur­su­ing a diploma in pub­lic man­age­ment through the Univer­sity of SA and is ex­pected to com­plete it in 2017.

His CV re­veals that he also holds a cer­tifi­cate in sup­ply chain man­age­ment from Pro-Ac­tive Col­lege in Pre­to­ria.

Sources claim Nzuza be­lieves the nom­i­nees of the ANCYL should be highly qual­i­fied to avoid em­bar­rass­ing the league.

In an­other twist to the ANCYL dif­fer­ences, it has now emerged that the pow­er­ful KwaZulu-Na­tal struc­ture is push­ing an al­ter­na­tive can­di­date for the top NYDA post: na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (NEC) mem­ber Bavelile Hlongwa.

“It is not be­cause she is from KwaZulu-Na­tal, but rather that she is com­pe­tent, she is a woman, she is well read,” said an ANCYL mem­ber from that prov­ince.

Hlongwa grad­u­ated in 2011 with a BSc in chem­i­cal en­gi­neer­ing from the Univer­sity of KwaZulu-Na­tal.

The NYDA’s man­age­ment and di­rec­tor ranks have been dom­i­nated by the Young Com­mu­nist League (YCL), whose chair­per­son, Yer­shen Pil­lay, has chaired the NYDA board for the past three years.

This has caused dis­gruntle­ment within the ANCYL and led to their de­ter­mi­na­tion to push for a takeover of the NYDA. The term of the cur­rent NYDA board ends next month and a process to ap­point a new board has be­gun in Par­lia­ment, but it has been sub­ject to var­i­ous de­lays. Three meet­ings that were sched­uled to short­list can­di­dates for in­ter­views have been post­poned over the past two weeks, with the last meet­ing – which was sched­uled to take place on Fe­bru­ary 2 – post­poned for lack of a quo­rum. City Press has heard Maine felt un­der­mined as pres­i­dent and that he worked more closely with Moela, but that it seemed like the power in the league was seen to be cen­tralised in KwaZulu-Na­tal.

“The pres­i­dency and sec­re­taries are be­tray­ing each other. Nzuza works with his deputy, Thandi Mo­raka, from Lim­popo and Collen works with Des­mond [Moela]. The trea­surer, Reg­gie Nk­abinde, is at the cen­tre.

“But if the sec­re­tary and the pres­i­dent are not in agree­ment, as is the case now, the process gets frus­trated,” said a league leader.

How­ever, a Gaut­eng re­gional leader dis­missed as “ma­li­cious ru­mours” talk that cracks were widen­ing in the ANCYL’s top struc­ture, al­though he did ad­mit there had been con­cerns “at some point” about too many peo­ple from KwaZulu-Na­tal be­ing in­cor­po­rated into the ANCYL NEC – and about th­ese com­mit­tee mem­bers be­ing de­ployed in strate­gic po­si­tions.

An­other source from KwaZulu-Na­tal said it was not nec­es­sar­ily true that Maine and Nzuza were fight­ing, but that Maine was “very weak” and Nzuza was a “very strong char­ac­ter”.

“The pres­i­dent does not in­spire con­fi­dence. He is weak and peo­ple flock to Nzuza when they want some­thing,” said the source.

He said this was why it would ap­pear as if Maine was be­ing un­der­mined, which was not re­ally the case.

City Press can re­veal that Par­lia­ment has re­ceived 117 ap­pli­ca­tions for the seven seats on the board.

Par­lia­ment doc­u­ments re­veal that 11 ANCYL mem­bers were nom­i­nated from Luthuli House by Tham­sanqa Sibiya, who is the co­or­di­na­tor of the ANCYL’s NEC and na­tional work­ing com­mit­tee. Their let­ters of nom­i­na­tion were signed by Nzuza. Among them are Moela and Hlongwa’s names.

Other na­tional youth league lead­ers whose names are up for con­sid­er­a­tion are Thu­lani Tshefuta, who is also a leader for the SA Youth Coun­cil; Them­binkosi Joso­phu; Sipho Diale; Joy Maimela; Bigo Mathe; Ntombi Koloti; Mbasa Satyi; An­driehetha Jacobs; and the league’s spokesper­son, Mlon­dolozi Mkhize.

Nzuza de­nied there were ten­sions be­tween him and other lead­ers. “There is no fight­ing per­tain­ing to the NYDA. The most im­por­tant thing is that the ANCYL is not tasked with ad­verts for the NYDA and, there­fore, it can­not be a source of con­flict.

“We are a political or­gan­i­sa­tion; that is all we are. There is ab­so­lutely no ten­sion within the ANCYL.”

Nzuza said his re­la­tion­ship with Maine, whom he re­ferred to as a friend, was rock solid. Maine sim­ply said he sticks by what Nzuza said. In­cum­bent NYDA chair­per­son Pil­lay has been nom­i­nated by, among oth­ers, the YCL.

YCL sec­re­tary Mluleki Dle­langa said Pil­lay was the per­fect man for the job and was well qual­i­fied.

He said the YCL was not wor­ried about the three-year de­gree re­quire­ment be­cause “we have been the ones who were call­ing for the youth of our coun­try to make education fash­ion­able. There­fore, we call on oth­ers to ad­here to the re­quire­ments of the ad­vert.”

Collen Maine

Des­mond Moela

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