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Wed Jun 01 09:30:28 SAST 2016

We will retain our metros – Mantashe

Genevieve Quintal | 27 January, 2016 22:24
Mantashe said the ANC's list process was a tense exercise and had the potential to be divisive. Some wanted to be councillors and others wanted to retain their positions. File photo
Image by: Sunday Times

The ANC is confident that it will retain the metros it currently governs in this year's local government elections, secretary general Gwede Mantashe said on Wednesday.

Pundits believe the local government elections will centre around the fight for the metros as opposition parties such as the Economic Freedom Fighters and Democratic Alliance have vowed to take control of cities such as Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay.

Mantashe said the ANC had done a lot of work at local government level. "Our urban areas have been de-racialised. In many municipalities financial management has been stabilised," he told reporters in Pretoria following a three-day national executive lekgotla.

"National and provincial government have intervened decisively where necessary to ensure that weak or dysfunctional municipalities are capacitated and if in the interests of better governance, political leadership has been changed."

ANC branches nominating candidates for local government and Mantashe said the majority of branch general meetings (BGMs) had been held.

The list process for local government elections have not gone smoothly everywhere. But Mantashe said these incidents were few and the party was dealing with them.

"We are attending to incidences as they happen but in [the] majority [of] cases there are no incidences. There are provinces where we are at about 70% of BGMs... held and public meetings. There were no incidences.

No chaos

"We don't have the situation of chaos during the nomination process."

On Tuesday, disgruntled ANC supporters in Tshwane vandalised the party's regional office in Arcadia as they called for the removal of the party's leadership in the area. A small group sang and danced in front of the office while others went inside and vandalised it.

A protester complained that there were actions within the organisation and certain leaders allowing only a selected number of their supporters to attend meetings.

Last week, a group of ANC Women's League members bared their buttocks outside the ANC’s Tshwane offices. They were unhappy with the outcomes of a branch general meeting.

Mantashe said the ANC's list process was a tense exercise and had the potential to be divisive. Some wanted to be councillors and others wanted to retain their positions.

"The problem with factions is that a faction thinks it's protecting the ANC from a faction," he said.

Mantashe said when people told him that the leadership in Tshwane wanted to "affirm their buddies" he could not help wondering if there was a possibility of a faction not happy with the outcome of the list processes.

On the date for the local government elections, Mantashe said like other political parties, the ANC was waiting for a date to be announced.

Source News 24

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