‘A strong, united ANC can defeat resistance to RET’
However, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma believes there must be unity of purpose
PRESIDENTIAL hopeful Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma says a strong and united ANC is needed to push through radical economic transformation and defeat powerful forces that are resisting it.
She warns, however, that it must be unity of purpose with clear agreements on what needs to be done rather than unity which is in a vacuum.
Dlamini-Zuma was addressing thousands of ANC supporters during her campaign trail in Mopani and Sekhukhune districts, Limpopo at the weekend.
Flanked by senior ANC leaders including ANC Womens League President Bathabile Dlamini; secretary general Meokgo Matuba; ANC Youth League leader Collen Maine; Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi; Public Adminstration Minister Faith Muthambi and Limpopo Coghsta MEC Makoma Makhurupetje, among others, Dlamini-Zuma visited Tzaneen and Giyani in Mopani before proceeding to address the Khoshigadi Madinoge Kgoloko Memorial Lecture in Jane Furse on Sunday.
She rallied ANC members behind the policy of radical economic transformation, called for land redistribution, preached for unity in the ANC and highlighted the role of women in the struggle against oppression and patriarchy.
In Giyani on Saturday, DlaminiZuma met local chiefs and religious leaders before addressing a gathering at the Oasis Hotel. She told the crowd that packed the venue that radical economic transformation meant that the structure of the economy, ownership patterns and control must be changed.
It was also important that the country beneficiated, industrialised and improved infrastructure to drive the economy and create jobs, she added.
“And this we can do if we have a strong ANC, a united ANC, because there will be resistance. We must not think that it will be easy,” DlaminiZuma said.
“We have already seen [that] this resistance has started. But if we are united; we are strong; we can resist; we can move this country to prosperity. So, comrades, the struggle continues.”
Insisting that it was a “big mistake” to think that the struggle ended in 1994, Dlamini-Zuma said that “the difficult struggle” was only going to start now.
She said it was unacceptable that very little has changed regarding land ownership patterns.
“Here in Limpopo, you have very fertile land, which means if we modernise agriculture and also process what we produce, we can create a lot of jobs, get a lot of revenue. In addition, parts of Limpopo are very rich in minerals, but those minerals are not working to the benefit of our people at the moment,” she added to loud cheers from the crowd.
In Jane Furse, Dlamini-Zuma visited the Kgoloko family, laid a wreath at her grave before delivering a lecture at the Moreko High School.
Picking up from where she left off in Giyani, the ANC MP reiterated her call for her supporters to run a clean and positive campaign.
Dlamini-Zuma singled out leaders of the ANC Youth League (ANCYL), saying she agreed with Bathabile Dlamini that while young lions were known for being radical, it was important for them to focus on the strength of their candidates than the weaknesses of their political rivals.
“If you want to elect someone, just lobby for them. Say the good things that they do, their strength but the ones you don’t want to elect, just leave alone,” she said.
Dlamini-Zuma said there must be unity of purpose in the ANC.
“Unity cannot be in a vacuum. We must have unity of purpose. We need to agree that this is what needs to happen. Let’s unite, and let is happen,” she added.
The ANCYL has targeted Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, DlaminiZuma’s main rival for the ANC presidency, for verbal abuse in recent months.
They labelled him a stooge for white monopoly capital. Ramaphosa, in turn, accused some ANCYL leaders of being stupid.
Maine and Dlamini used the Sekhukhune rally to respond to Ramaphosa’s recent statement where he questioned the leadership qualities of some ANCYL leaders.
“When people call us stupid, don’t respond to them. Leave them because the reality is starting to sink in that Nkosazana will become the first woman president of the ANC,” Maine said.
“You can call us names but we will not change. It’s Nkosazana or nothing. She is the only one who will help us, give us free education and jobs.”
Maine said the “only hope” for the ANC were Dlamini-Zuma; Mpumalanga Premier David “DD” Mabuza; his Free State counterpart Ace Magashule; International Relations Minister Maite NkoanaMashabane; ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte and Gauteng ANC chairperson Paul Mashatile.
Dlamini said they were not deterred by the notion that Sekhukhune was a no-go area for Dlamini-Zuma.
The ANCWL president maintained that Limpopo was for everyone and they were in the province to cure the tribalism disease that has been spreading recently.
“We are not going to appreciate the pronouncement of people who say, young people are foolish because next time, the whole nation will be stupid,” she said.
ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL: It was a“big mistake”to think that the struggle ended in 1994, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said in Limpopo last weekend. The difficult struggle was only going to start now.