ANC NEC moves on KZN vote­rig­ging

The Witness - - FRONT PAGE - CLIVE NDOU and NEWS24 • clive.ndou@wit­ness.co.za

THE ANC’s na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (NEC) has re­solved to in­ter­vene in KwaZulu­Natal fol­low­ing a flood of vote­rig­ging com­plaints lodged dur­ing branch meet­ings to nom­i­nate pres­i­den­tial can­di­dates.

Brief­ing the me­dia yes­ter­day fol­low­ing an NEC meet­ing, ANC sec­re­tary­gen­eral Gwede Man­tashe said the NEC would also in­ter­vene in the East­ern Cape and the North­ern Cape.

This comes af­ter the sup­port­ers of pres­i­den­tial hope­ful Cyril Ramaphosa lodged close to a hun­dred com­plaints ac­cus­ing ANC lead­ers in the prov­ince of rig­ging branch gen­eral meet­ings (BGMs) to en­sure a win for his ri­val, Nkosazana Dlamini­Zuma.

Ac­cord­ing to Man­tashe 40% of branches in the prov­ince have con­cluded their BGMs

Man­tashe, who said 70% of branches have con­cluded their BGMs na­tion­ally, said the NEC has given branches un­til the week­end to con­clude the meet­ings and warned that there would be no ex­ten­sion.

Giv­ing an idea of the sta­tus quo in the prov­inces, Man­tashe said: “The trou­bled prov­ince of the East­ern Cape, as of yes­ter­day was at 56% of BGMs, the Free State at 75,9%, Gaut­eng at 76%, Mpumalanga at 95,7%, Lim­popo at 73,8%, North­west at 54,3%, the Western Cape at 66,3% and the North­ern Cape at 94%.”

He said the party was con­fi­dent its De­cem­ber con­fer­ence would be a suc­cess.

Dis­grun­tled party mem­bers in the North­ern Cape have taken the ANC to court, ask­ing for the May 8 provin­cial congress in Coles­burg to be re­ viewed and set aside. KwaZulu­Natal and the East­ern Cape are also en­gaged in court bat­tles.

“The NEC re­ceived a re­port on the ap­peal of the Lower South Coast re­gion in KZN. The re­gional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (REC) was ap­peal­ing the de­ci­sion of the provin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (PEC) to with­draw the ex­ec­u­tive pow­ers of the REC, es­pe­cially in re­la­tion to mu­nic­i­pal over­sight and mem­ber­ship man­age­ment,” ex­plained Man­tashe.

He said the REC was ex­pected to con­tinue with its work, which in­cludes the over­see­ing of branch gen­eral meet­ings and prepa­ra­tion for the up­com­ing con­fer­ence.

Man­tashe said dis­pute teams con­ sist­ing of NEC mem­bers had been de­ployed across the coun­try to ad­dress ob­jec­tions and com­plaints about branch gen­eral meet­ings.

He also an­nounced that the con­fer­ence, which takes place un­der the theme Re­mem­ber Tambo: To­wards Unity, Re­newal and Rad­i­cal So­cioE­co­nomic Trans­for­ma­tion, will be at­tended by 5 240 vot­ing del­e­gates.

A to­tal of 4 713 — that is at least 90% of vot­ing del­e­gates — would be branch del­e­gates. “The re­main­der is the 10%, that takes us to 5 240, which is your Women’s League, your Youth League, your Veter­ans’ League, your NEC and an al­lo­cated num­ber to PECs,” said Man­tashe.

The sec­re­tary­gen­eral also re­flected on the East­ern Cape’s vi­o­lent Septem­ber congress, which was dubbed “a fes­ti­val of chairs” by Deputy Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa, who later re­tracted the phrase.

Man­tashe said the vi­o­lent con­duct dis­played at that con­fer­ence was against the party’s val­ues and cul­ture.

Man­tashe said the ANC con­demned the use of vi­o­lence to achieve a win­ning re­sult at con­fer­ences and ex­pressed sym­pa­thy with those who were in­jured when del­e­gates started throw­ing chairs at one an­other.

Man­tashe said the NEC was “un­equiv­o­cal” in the need to en­sure that all in­ci­dents which took place around that con­fer­ence were in­ves­ti­gated speed­ily.

“The [ANC] na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee re­ceived a re­port on the ap­peal of the Lower South Coast re­gion in KZN. The re­gional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee was ap­peal­ing the de­ci­sion of the provin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee to with­draw the ex­ec­u­tive pow­ers of the re­gion ...”

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