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ANC: Saturday's NW list conference won’t affect national outcome

The North West was unable to host its provincial list conference after violence broke out during its first list conference in December last year.

FILE: ANC top six officials are in Durban for the party’s national list conference which began on 4 January 2019. Picture: Ziyanda Ngcobo/EWN

DURBAN – The African National Congress (ANC) says the impending North West provincial list conference will not affect the outcomes of the national list conference which got underway on Friday afternoon.

Senior leaders of the governing party are currently in Umhlanga where members are discussing which names to place on a list to go to Parliament, the nine legislatures and the National Council of Provinces.

The ANC’s branches selected names to fill these positions during various provincial list conferences.

The top 25% on the final national list are guaranteed a position in the National Assembly.

The North West was unable to host its provincial list conference after violence broke out during its first run list conference in December last year.

ANC members there accused the current provincial task team of manipulating the list along factional lines.

ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte says the provincial list conference in the North West on Saturday is only about consolidating who will represent the party in that province’s legislature.

“What we look for here is demographic representation [and] gender parity is quite important.”

Duarte says 800 names have already been forward to go to the National Assembly but only 200 will make the cut Thereafter, a decision will be made on where to redeploy the remaining members who have been listed.

“What happens now is that people with the highest number of votes tallied across the country make it into the top 25% of the list, those names remain untouched. Below that, we begin to discuss what the needs also are of the ANC in the various parliaments. We look at skills [and] the experience.”

Duarte says the criteria used by the party to select candidates will include checking if any of them have a criminal record.

NW TO FOCUS ON PROVINCIAL LEGISLATURE

Duarte says the delay in the hosting of the North West provincial list conference will only marginally affect which names are elected to go to Parliament after the elections.

She has since been to the province in an attempt to resolve the issues it faces and has given the go-ahead for the provincial list conference on Saturday.

Duarte says the work being undertaken is unlikely to affect the current selection process underway.

“The main bulk of the list won’t change at this stage because what the North West is going to focus on, we believe, is the legislature in the province.”

However, she says she’s not ruling out the possibility of a court challenge.

“Because we live in a democracy, anything is challengeable but we believe that we have run the process fairly openly and transparently.”

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)

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