ANC calls out Ramaphosa for slate pronouncement

06 November 2017 - 15:25 By Neo Goba
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Image: Moeletsi Mabe

The ANC has called on Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa to refrain from naming slates‚ as branches are the only ones with the power to elect leaders to the party's top positions.

This follows Ramaphosa announcing his running mates at a rally in Ga-Sekhukhune‚ Limpopo‚ on Sunday‚ in which he nominated Minister of Science and Technology Naledi Pandor as his choice for deputy president‚ if he is elected as the party's next leader next month.

"The African National Congress has noted with concern reports of statements made by leaders of the organisation pronouncing on a line-up of comrades to be elected as officials of the ANC at the 54th national conference.

Such pronouncements are unacceptable‚ whether comrades have a preference or not‚ and seek to usurp the entrenched right of the branches to nominate candidates of their choosing‚" the party said in a statement on Monday.

On Sunday‚ Ramaphosa took everyone by surprise when he named the ANC members he would like to see included alongside himself and Pandor in the next top six: namely‚ former KwaZulu-Natal ANC chairperson Senzo Mchunu for secretary general‚ current secretary general Gwede Mantashe for national chairperson‚ and Gauteng ANC chairperson Paul Mashatile for treasurer general.

He called upon the party members to elect leaders who are capable of taking the movement and the country forward. He further said these members that he pronounced on are credible leaders who can renew the ANC to its original state.

Although the party didn't address Ramaphosa by name‚ it was clear that their statement was directed to him.

"The ANC therefore calls on all its leaders and members to desist from the practice of pronouncing on and circulating slates‚ which may be seen to undermine the branches' inalienable right to select candidates best placed to implement the national democratic revolution‚" the party said.

It further added that the 2015 National General Council resolved to outlaw slates and reaffirm the role of the branch as the basic unit of the ANC.

"Accordingly‚ in implementing this resolution‚ the NEC directed that we ensure branch nominations are not tempered with‚ and that the will of the branches is reflected and respected."

Various branches of the ANC have already started their Branch General Meetings (BGMs)‚ at which they intend nominating branch delegates who will attend the 54th national conference of the party.

Conference delegates will nominate and elect candidates to national executive committee positions‚ and they will also discuss policy proposals which could inform government policy.