ANC NEC ditches plan for winner takes all vote for leadership positions

ANC officials proposed the change to try and curb slate politics.

Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - A plan to curb a winner-takes all approach to voting for the African National Congress (ANC)’s top leadership was ditched at the final meeting of the party’s outgoing national executive committee on Thursday.

The draft programme for the ANC’s national conference starting this weekend provided for two separate rounds of voting.

The first session was to decide who would become president as well as the posts of party chairperson, secretary-general and treasurer-general.

Only once those results were declared, would a second round of voting take place for deputy president and deputy secretary general.

But that plan has now been abandoned.

ANC officials proposed the change to try and curb slate politics – where delegates vote en bloc for a pre-determined list of names for top spots. It would have allowed for some from the losing side to be included in the top leadership, instead of one faction taking all the positions.

ANC KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Sihle Zikalala says the NEC decided on Thursday night that the logistics of two voting sessions would be too challenging.

“We've agreed that we just need to do it once, vote for (all) the officials as a whole. Elections of the officials will be held simultaneously.

“When we vote for the president, we will then be voting for the deputy, so you vote once for all officials.”

This means there’s now no chance for the losing presidential candidate to be nominated from the floor for the post of deputy president, something that will need the backing of 25% of voting delegates.

Before any ballot is cast, delegates will first have to decide on proposals to expand the top leadership by having two deputy presidents, and or two deputy secretary generals, and reducing the number of additional NEC members from 80 to 60.