NEC to meet ahead of Mangaung conference

The NEC is expected to focus on the court rulings on the Free State and North West nomination processes.

NC branded cooling towers in Mangaung. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN

MANGAUNG - The ANC's National Executive Committee (NEC) is expected to focus on the court rulings on the Free State and North West nomination processes when they meet on Saturday.

The ruling party's top brass will gather for the very last time to discuss issues ahead of the Mangaung elective conference.

ANC delegates will elect new leaders when the gathering kicks off on Sunday morning.

The NEC knows that for this conference to be successful, they have to deal with the problems in the Free State and North West.

The ANC in the North West has been divided for several years now.

Those tensions were evident during the ANC's policy conference in June.

Now leaders here will try to find ways to contain those issues in a bid to prevent disruptions to the conference, taking place at the University of the Free State.

The NEC will also have to manage the expectations of the Free State ANC's provincial executive committee, who will want to take part in the conference.

The ANC will have to ensure it complies with yesterday's court ruling, as it would want to avoid another legal challenge.

On Friday, the Constitutional Court ruled that the Free State provincial elective conference was unlawful and its decisions were invalid.

President Jacob Zuma may also want to look back on some of the decisions this NEC took over the last five years.

But he is unlikely to dwell on perhaps the most important decision to recall former president Thabo Mbeki.

CONFERENCE MUST DECIDE

The North West High Court has ordered that the conference itself must decide whether delegates sent by the North West ANC may participate in the gathering.

The order was handed down on Saturday morning.

In the order, North West Judge President Monica Leeuw said that the conference must have the final word on whether the delegates can participate.

This was established under clause 11.3 of the ANC's constitution.

That clause stipulates that the conference can overrule decisions made by all other committees within the ruling party.

Leeuw did however dismiss the main part of the application calling for all the delegates to be prevented from participating in the process.

The matter was lodged by disgruntled members to stop pro-Zuma delegates from attending the conference.