ANC swoops on Durban
ELECTION MANIFESTO: RAMAPHOSA MOVE UNITES DIVIDED KZN
It was ‘party time’ as the ANC factions seemed to take hands.
From Nkandla to Bizana – they came from all corners of the country to paint Durban in the black, green and gold colours of the ANC. Dancing to anything from Maskanda to freedom songs, crowds who thronged the Moses Mabhida Stadium, which was filled to the capacity of 85 000, made the atmosphere resemble a politically joyous carnival.
ANC supporters, clad in yellow T-shirts with the face of President Cyril Ramaphosa on, marked the effectiveness with which the ruling party campaign has been able to persuade the party rank-andfile of KwaZulu-Natal about the importance of unity and organisational renewal in the run-up to the 2019 polls.
In what is seen as a masterstroke by Ramaphosa, he ensured the crowds that his predecessor, Jacob Zuma, was accorded space and recognition wherever he was – cashing in on the former president’s continued popularity in the province.
“Zuma! Zuma! Zuma!”, was the reaction from the crowds as Zuma entered the stadium – a strong applause compared to the lukewarm reception received by Ramaphosa and the ANC top six.
As Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection research director Susan Booysen put it, accommodating Zuma in the ANC KwaZulu election campaign, was “a strategic move”.
So strategic was the move that Zuma’s presence was explained as ensuring that the ANC reclaimed KwaZulu-Natal in the 2019 polls.
Strong security presence inside and outside the event precinct saw a massive police deployment. You could not get close to the stage without accreditation.
The incident-free event has gone a long way to reassure the ANC of its support in a province.
MUSIC MAN. Former president Jacob Zuma dances at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban during the ANC’S 107th anniversary celebrations and ANC election manifesto unveiling.
FRONT ROW. ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa, deputy president David Mabuza and ANC treasurer-general Paul Mashatile at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban.
HOW GREEN IS OUR VALLEY. ANC Women’s League members at Moses Mabhida stadium, listening to the ANC’s election manifesto delivered by President Cyril Ramaphosa.