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Mantashe: Having 8 candidates for ANC top post is ‘ridiculous’

Gwede Mantashe says having eight candidates contesting for the position of ANC president in the party is abnormal and ridiculous.

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – African National Congress (ANC) Secretary General Gwede Mantashe says having eight candidates contesting for the position of ANC president in the party is abnormal and ridiculous.

Mantashe was speaking during the OR Tambo lecture in Ekurhuleni on Friday.

The ANC will choose its next leader at its elective conference in December.

There are at least six ANC leaders that have publicly accepted the nomination to run for the position of ANC president at the party’s elective conference in December.

Mantashe says this is ridiculous.

“It’s ridiculous because we’re an organisation, we know one another and we know our capabilities. It’s not just a question of coin tossing.”

When asked if he thinks having so many contenders will divide the ANC, he says only the nomination process will reveal this.

“The reality is that we’ll look at the nominations because now people have shown their hands. Nominations are only going to start now.”

Is unclear who the other two people who intend running for ANC President are.

DLAMINI-ZUMA TO BE MP

Mantashe also confirmed that ANC Presidential hopeful Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma will be sworn in as a Member of Parliament next week.

He says the plan was always to deploy Dlamini-Zuma in Parliament.

“Yes, she is going to be sworn in as an MP. You must remember she was in the top 20 then and went to Addis Ababa. We kept her on the list. On her return, we couldn’t put her in immediately because we can only change our list in September.”

Asked if the plan is to keep her as an ordinary MP, he responded: “I don’t know, my own plan is to send her to Parliament.”

Mantashe says the decision behind deploying Dlamini-Zuma to Parliament is simply to have her as an MP.

This move could be seen as a plan to deploy Dlamini-Zuma in government when or if the president reshuffles his Cabinet.

Although he has brushed off possibilities that the Presidential hopeful may be deployed in government.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)