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Mashatile outlines GP’s Mangaung plans

The ANC in Gauteng held a special provincial general conference to prepare for Mangaung.

Gauteng ANC Chairman Paul Mashatile. Picture: ANC

ALBERTON - The ANC in Gauteng on Sunday held a special provincial general conference to prepare for the party's national electoral conference in Mangaung next week.

A few hundred people gathered in the Alberton Civic Centre, south of Johannesburg, to discuss policy issues and meet for the last time before they head to Mangaung.

Gauteng ANC chairman Paul Mashatile delivered the opening address, where in it he said there was a clear mandate on who delegates should vote for at the Mangaung conference.

Last week, 500 delegates met for the provincial nominations conference and backed Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe to take over from Jacob Zuma as ANC president.

But Mashatile said delegates who attended the meeting ultimately had the final say.

"An elective conference means exactly that; that delegates have an opportunity to freely elect their leaders."

He also thanked members for maintaining peace during the nominations conference and urged them to remain disciplined at the national conference following the recent disruption of several provincial nominations meetings.

The ANC's final determination of delegates for Mangaung shows that the bulk of the delegates will come from KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape - which have both said they will back Zuma for a second term.

Together, the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal will have over 1,500 of the 4,500 delegates who will be attending the four-day conference.

The conference closes on 20 December.

Meanwhile, Mashatile warned that the Democratic Alliance's threat to take power in the province at the 2014 general elections should not be taken lightly.

Mashatile said the DA's ambitions are delusional, but should not be ignored.

"We must not be surprised as ANC branches when there are service delivery protests. We must be the first to know. Whatever posture the DA takes, it remains our ideological opponent."

The opposition announced during its federal congress in November that it planned to govern in Gauteng in 2014.

Currently, they are in power in the Western Cape and the party has been hailed for good governance in that province.