Keep state resources out of party wars says Mantashe

05 September 2017 - 16:39 By Neo Goba
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe.
Image: Supplied

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe has called on factions within the party to refrain from using state resources in smear campaigns designed to discredit presidential candidates.

His remarks come days after deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa made headlines over alleged extramarital affairs with several women.

Ramaphosa has admitted to one affair and said state resources have been used in a “smear campaign” against him.

He claimed that the emails being used as proof of the affairs were doctored and suspected government intelligence staff were implicated.

"All we can say about state institutions being used is that we are hoping that we don't degenerate to the level where the National Party was because that was the beginning of the end. If we go to the conference in December and people begin to be personal and use all of the dirty tricks‚ you must appreciate that it’s not the dirty tricks that are important... [but] it is the destruction of essence of politics and the African National Congress‚" said Mantashe.

Mantashe was speaking at Luthuli House where he held a press conference on the state of plans ahead of the party's December elective conference.

The ANC is in the last stages of their internal audit process meant to verify members in good standing ahead of the conference.

According to Mantashe‚ 70% of branches must be in good standing to participate in the December conference.

The conference will see new leadership elected to top positions and the race for the ANC presidency has been hotly contested.

"Audits have now been completed in six of the nine regions. All the branches that have passed the audit as per the audit report sent to the province's‚ may now convene the BGMs (branch general meetings) in terms of the road map adopted by the NEC (national executive committee)‚" said Mantashe.

The role of the BGMs is to nominate branch delegates who will attend the conference. Conference delegates will nominate and elect candidates to NEC positions. They will also discuss policy proposals which could inform government policy.

Mantashe has also called on the police to speed up their investigations into assassinations of political leaders in KwaZulu Natal after former ANCYL Secretary General Sindiso Magaqa succumbed to his injuries on Monday after being shot in July.