The Witness - - NEWS - CLIVE NDOU

THE mas­sive crowd at the ANC man­i­festo launch in Dur­ban on Satur­day, made it dif­fi­cult for party sup­port­ers who wanted to boo Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa to carry out their plan.

Ramaphosa sup­port­ers in the eThek­wini and Moses Mab­hida re­gions told The Wit­ness that they were aware of plans to boo Ramaphosa. “Lead­ing up to the man­i­festo launch we had been re­ceiv­ing reg­u­lar brief­ings on the plans of those who were plot­ting to em­bar­rass the pres­i­dent. How­ever, when they ar­rived at Moses Mab­hida Sta­dium they re­alised that they could not im­ple­ment their plans as there were too many peo­ple at the venue.

“They were a small group and even if they had at­tempted to boo no one would have paid any at­ten­tion — the singing and ex­cite­ment of the crowd would eas­ily have drowned the boos,” a se­nior ANC leader in the eThek­wini re­gion said.

Mem­bers of the ANC na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee (NEC) had trav­elled to var­i­ous parts of KZN prior to the man­i­festo launch in a bid to defuse anti-Ramaphosa sen­ti­ments.

How­ever, a se­nior ANC leader in the prov­ince said while the NEC’s KZN road­shows did si­lence Ramaphosa op­po­nents, they did not dis­cour­age those who were plan­ning to em­bar­rass him at the man­i­festo launch.

“In the end, what you find is a sit­u­a­tion where peo­ple will be declar­ing their sup­port for Ramaphosa while at the same time par­tic­i­pat­ing in clan­des­tine ac­tiv­i­ties de­signed to hurt him,” he said.

The ANC man­i­festo launch took place at a time when for­mer pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma’s sup­port­ers, par­tic­u­larly in the Moses Mab­hida Re­gion, are in­ten­si­fy­ing their fightback cam­paign.

The Zuma sup­port­ers, who want a re­gional con­fer­ence to be held be­fore the up­com­ing gen­eral elec­tions, have lodged an ap­pli­ca­tion at the Pi­eter­mar­itzburg high court to have the party’s in­terim re­gional lead­er­ship dis­solved. • [email protected]­

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