We're going to stop internal campaigning‚ ANC KZN promises
The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal‚ which is widely expected to be the king-maker at the party's elective conference later this year‚ has vowed to stop promoting individual candidates.
The party was widely expected to endorse Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to replace Jacob Zuma as party president‚ with some of its affiliates already openly announcing their preference.
But in the name of unity - and with the ultimate goal to repair the obvious fractures in the party that have emerged since it elected its provincial leaders in 2015 - provincial secretary Super Zuma said this internal campaigning would come to an end.
Unity was more important‚ he said‚ than pushing names of leaders. It is also widely known that as a result of the divisions‚ two slates have emerged‚ one supporting Dlamini-Zuma and the other supporting ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa.
With KZN being the biggest and arguably most influential province at the national conference‚ who they back is very likely to be the ANC's‚ and country's‚ next president.
The party said it will adopt the national executive committee stance that there be no slates and no raising of the names prior to the national elective conference in December.
"That will be our road map between now and the policy conference in mid-year and the national conference in December‚" said Zuma. Zuma said that a decision by the ANC's national executive committee (NEC) - of which he is a member - meant that leadership discussions would be secondary.
A policy that 98% of the discussions at the conference will be about policy and the direction of the movement‚ and only two percent will be spent discussing and electing leadership‚ has been taken.
He declined to say who KwaZulu-Natal would back. "The lessons and knowledge we have acquired over the past two decades put us in a better position to lead the South African revolution to its logical conclusion.
Hence the PEC [provincial executive committee] is firmly convinced that the unity of the ANC is more important now that ever before during the course of our struggle for freedom‚" said Zuma. He was speaking at a briefing following the party's lekgotla last week.
He said the meeting focused on discussing the challenges facing "our people and‚ in particular‚ the movement".
- TMG Digital/The Times