Free State ANC in turmoil over list conference, leaders

If left unresolved, the Free State matter could adversely affect party support in this year’s elections.

In what is set to politically polarise the ANC in the Free State, a group of disgruntled party activists – unhappy with the outcome of the December 10, 2018 provincial list conference – plan to step up legal pressure against the provincial executive committee (PEC), if the outcome of the provincial conference is not declared null and void.

According to Monnapule Ntamo – an ANC provincial member behind the campaign – last year’s provincial list conference took place against the backdrop of a court process to dissolve “an illegitimate PEC which, through gate-keeping subverted the ANC constitution, guidelines and procedures” and “parachuted” itself into power with the assistance of some national leaders.

The threat by the Free State ANC members flies in the face of the party policy of resolving matters internally.

If left unresolved, the Free State matter could adversely affect party support in this year’s elections.

Said Ntamo: “Today we are reaping the results of this imposed PEC.

“It becomes important that the coming into office of this PEC be located [viewed] properly [with] in the continued programme of further hollowing the ANC and actively creating membership dissatisfaction in pursuit of an alternative agenda.

“As members of the ANC we have once again taken a difficult decision of taking our communities, in particular, and the country in general into our confidence.

“The decision is informed by the knowledge that ANC is the leader of society.

“In turn, it can only be correct that if we say the ANC is the leader of society in the Free State, the people should know who these leaders are, how they came into power and what is likely to happen if such parachuted leaders continue to be in office.”

He said the people of the Free State must be enabled to “properly connect the dots”.

“By connecting the dots, our citizens will link the outcome that gave rise to this current PEC and the legal means afoot embarked upon by bona-fide members to dissolve it, [and the] continued mayhem regarding non-existent if not moribund and dead branches,” Ntamo said.

“Against such a gory background, the ability of this same PEC to then publicly claim having had a successful and legitimate list conference, becomes highly questionable. Section 23 of the ANC constitution refers to a branch as a basic structure of the organisation.

“Clause 23.2.3 provides that a branch is a place where members exercise their basic democratic rights to discuss amongst others and to formulate policy,” he said.

Ntamo criticised lack of public participation at branches in electing candidates, with duly elected delegates being excluded.

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