Secretary General of the ANC Gwede Mantashe sits next to ANC National Spokesperson Zizi Kodwa. File photo.
Image: Masi Losi

ANC leaders have been called to an emergency national executive committee meeting (NEC) early on Saturday morning - two hours before the scheduled start of its national conference - to deal with three damning court judgments made on Friday.

ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said the urgent special meeting of the outgoing NEC will sit at 8am.

The meeting is expected to discuss the party’s response to the three court judgments and decide on what action it would take in response to them.

The court judgments are likely to affect the number of delegates at the conference and may exclude the leadership of two provinces.

In the high court in Pietermaritzburg‚ Judge Rishi Seegobin dissolved the KwaZula-Natal ANC provincial executive committee (PEC)‚ disallowing the 27 member executive to participate in the conference.

Seegobin also granted the PEC leave to petition the Supreme Court of Appeal and the Constitutional Court. But the judge said the PEC would remain dissolved‚ as per a previous judgment‚ until the appeal was filed. In the North West‚ ANC members have won their court challenge to have the Bojanala regional conference nullified.

The group went to court asking for an order to set aside the 40 branch general meetings and to nullify the regional conference held on September 24. It is unclear what effect this would have on the delegates from these branches participating in the conference

The high court in Bloemfontein ruled that the ANC Free State provincial conference held earlier this week was invalid.

That conference re-elected provincial chairperson Ace Magashule.

TimesLive understands that the ANC’s legal teams have been studying these judgments and now the party’s top brass has to make a decision.

An NEC member said the court judgments were devastating to presidential candidate Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma’s supporters.

Another NEC member‚ Kebby Maphatsoe‚ accused the courts of interfering in internal matters of the ANC. “Why is the courts making these judgments on the eve of conference. Why didn’t they make these judgments last week?”

He said that despite the legal set back‚ they were confident of Dlamini-Zuma’s numbers. “We will still emerge. On Sunday Mama Nkosazana will sit in the front as president.”