‘ANC will come back as the strongest party’: Youth League’s Collen Malatji upbeat

11 June 2024 - 12:10
By Modiegi Mashamaite
ANCYL president Collen Malatji says it is not the end of the road for the ANC at the helm of governance. File photo.
Image: Papi Morake ANCYL president Collen Malatji says it is not the end of the road for the ANC at the helm of governance. File photo.

ANC Youth League (ANCYL) leader Collen Malatji believes the party will come back stronger in the next national elections.

After 30 years as the governing party, the ANC lost its majority in last month’s elections, attaining only 40.18% of the vote. 

In a recent interview, Malatji said the ANC’s poor showing at the polls this year was not the end of the road, asserting the party “would come back stronger” in the 2029 national elections.

“In 2029 the ANC will come back as the strongest party. If the ANC can implement all our resolutions, there will be no need for us to even do door-to-door. We can wake up in the morning and know the ANC received the biggest vote,” he said.

Malatji said the ANCYL supported the party’s move to negotiate for a government of national unity (GNU) instead of a coalition partnership because it enhanced unity.

“We’re not going to any coalition with anyone. We are inviting people to govern with us,” he said.

“The ANC has invited every South African who believes in building this country, who believes we must resolve all social economic problems, to come forward and join hands with the ANC in the government of national unity to try to bring everyone together.

He reaffirmed the ANC’s commitment to nation building and social cohesion.

“The ANC believes in nation building. It believes in bringing everyone together. That’s what the ANC fought for,” he said.

Addressing the party’s electoral setbacks, Malatji said the ANC had difficulty enforcing accountability.

“Our biggest problem as the ANC, which we must acknowledge, is our inability to discipline our own leaders and members. No organisation can survive without discipline, no matter how big it is.”

Unemployment and drug addiction remain among the challenges faced by the youth, he said.

“Peter Mokaba [the late ANCYL leader] would be very disappointed because his generation fought for the total liberation of South Africans. They fought for the youth to be able to learn freely in South Africa. They fought for a drug-free society. They fought for a crime-free society. I think we’re moving backward when it comes to those areas,” he said.

“Let’s put South Africa first because why are we exporting our jobs as raw materials to other countries to industrialise their economies and build secondary industries at the expense of our people? People can’t go to school until tertiary level but be unemployed.”