ANC embarks on regional visits ahead of 2017 elective conference

The ANC says these visits will focus on the principles of selecting leadership for the movement.

ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe Picture: Natalie Malgas/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG – The African National Congress (ANC) has started a process of visiting its regions as part of the political education programme ahead of its elective conference next year.

The party’s secretary general Gwede Mantashe is in the North West, while his deputy Jessie Duarte is in the Western Cape.

The ANC says these visits will focus on the principles of selecting leadership for the movement.

The governing party says it will elect its new leaders in December 2017, and some of its structures have already indicated who they want to lead the organisation.

The ANC’s women’s League and youth leagues have indicated they want a woman president to succeed President Jacob Zuma, with the name of the outgoing African Union Commision chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma being bandied around.

The party says the political education programme is done with the aim of unifying the organisation as it advances towards the elective conference.

At the same time, some unions affiliated to Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) want Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa to be the next leader.

The Communications Workers Union (CWU) says some of its members believe if Zuma would step down, the ANC could be rebuilt as a stronger organisation.
The National Health Education and Allied Workers Union became the first member of the tripartite alliance to call for Zuma’s axing.

The union is currently having discussions on who should be the next president of the ANC.

The CWU’s President Clyde Mervin says, “Already some of the members are of the view that he must step aside so that we can rebuild a strong ANC, rebuild a strong Cosatu, so that when the alliance is united the country will forward in a different direction.”

(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)