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All systems go for ANC KZN provincial conference, says Mdumiseni Ntuli

21 July 2022 - 20:10
ANC provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli briefed the media ahead of the party's ninth provincial conference in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.
ANC provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli briefed the media ahead of the party's ninth provincial conference in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.
Image: Amanda Khoza.

More than 1, 600 delegates are expected to gather at the Durban Olive Convention Centre on Friday to elect new leaders at the much-anticipated KwaZulu-Natal ninth provincial conference.

“We are not expecting major problems,” said provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli on Thursday.

The conference, which was initially scheduled to sit on July 15 and 17, was delayed by one week because the province wanted to accommodate more branches to participate as well as ensure branches that were directed to rerun  their branch general meetings (BGM’s) had enough time to do so.

Briefing the media on the state of readiness for the event, Ntuli said the current provincial executive committee, which was elected in 2018, met for the last time on Wednesday to reflect on its tenure in leadership.

He said: “We did not want a situation that by the time that the conference sits, we are contaminated by complaints or disputes emanating from branches saying that we were not considered or given enough time.”

Three branches have taken their matters to the national disputes resolution committee but Ntuli says whatever happens with those branches is immaterial to the composition of the conference.

“We expect the registration to be seamless tomorrow. In all 11 regions where the registration has taken place, we have not been made aware of major challenges or disputes,” he said. “We are the biggest province in the ANC in terms of membership ... They are all in good standing and are bringing delegates to the conference. The only structures not in good standing are the three leagues,  namely ANC Youth League, Women’s League and the Veterans league.”

Traditional leaders, alliance partners, business leaders and MPs will be among those attending.

He said: We are expecting this conference to be the biggest political school that has taken place in KZN in the past four years. We are expecting 1,617 voting delegates to come to the provincial conference, which is a combination of both branch delegates and delegates who are representing the leagues of the ANC, the PEC and the representatives of the regional executive committee.

“We have conducted preregistration processes in all of our regions and today we are registering members of the PEC, non-voting delegates, the leagues and regional executive committee members.”

Simultaneously, Ntuli said, name tags were also being printed on Thursday.

“The report we received this morning indicates that at least 95% of our branch delegates have been registered. Tomorrow morning between 7am and 9am we have set up that side for the delegates to collect their name tags and sign the register into what will be converted into credentials and the voters' roll at conference.”

It remains unclear whether President Cyril Ramaphosa will attend as he is expected to host Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara for a state visit on Friday.

Ntuli said Luthuli House informed the province that the conference will officially be opened by acting secretary-general Paul Mashatile.

If all goes well, Ntuli said, the conference was expected to kick off at 10am. “We are more than ready and excited,” he said.

PODCAST | A province run by personal politics - what to expect from the ANC KZN conference

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