ANC delegates in high spirits after voting for new leaders

18 December 2017 - 12:12
By Bafana Nzimande
Delegates singing ahead of the ANC  Elective conference starting in Nasrec.
Image: SIMPHIWE NKWALI/ Sunday Times Delegates singing ahead of the ANC Elective conference starting in Nasrec.

As ANC delegates await the results of the voting process‚ supporters of the two presidential candidates are equally confident that their preferred choice will be announced as the new president of the ANC.

The race is between Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and Cyril Ramaphosa‚ the only two remaining nominees for the party's top position.

Even though delegates are divided on who should take the number one seat‚ both camps have the same expectations from the person that will take over from outgoing president Jacob Zuma.

Party members said they want a leader who will stop corruption‚ unite the party and rebuild the ANC's support base.

"We have two nominees for the president position but there will be no winner in this conference. Instead we will have a candidate who will be tasked with uniting the ANC‚" said Tshepang Gopane‚ a voting delegate from the North West.

"Unity will be the winner. Whoever is announced as president must ensure that the ANC goes to the 2019 national elections united and stronger."

Gopane said he is backing Dlamini-Zuma but would accept a Ramaphosa victory because the voting process was fair.

"The conference is going according to plan‚ despite the fact that there were delays on the first day due to credentials‚" said Gauteng voting delegate Thulani Mphithikezi after casting his vote on Monday.

"The voting process was fair. Those who projected that the conference would collapse have been proven wrong. Now we are waiting for the outcome of the voting process and we hope that by the end of today CR17 will be announced as president."

A group of Limpopo and Gauteng voting delegates walked out of the Nasrec Expo Centre still in high spirits as they sang in support of their preferred candidates.

Vote counting is under way and the new ANC top six is expected to be announced later on Monday.

The majority of delegates went to freshen up after voting and are expected at the conference centre during the day for the announcement of the leadership results‚ as well as to engage in policy discussions.

A total of 4‚776 delegates were due to vote for the new ANC leadership.