EAST LONDON – The African National Congress (ANC)’s future remains under threat, with outgoing Eastern Cape convener Oscar Mabuyane flagging poor quality of membership, rampant corruption and state capture as some of the party’s continuing challenges.
Mabuyane delivered his political report on Saturday evening in East London.
The governing party’s second largest province is electing new leadership this weekend.
As the sun sets on the first day of the ANC Eastern Cape province, the business of the conference is only just taking shape.
In his political report, Mabuyane focused most of his attention on the renewal project and a need for the ANC to separate itself from corrupt networks and those whose values are not aligned to those of the party.
“Even the outcomes of the Zondo commission should be viewed as n opportunity for the ANC to do deep soul-searching and examine our process, systems and cultures on whether they are truly aligned to the rule of law, constitution and the expectation of society.”
He’s also called on the ANC to focus its efforts on regaining public trust, which has been weaning over the years.
Mabuyane is hoping to return to the helm of the party in the province but will have to beat Babalo Madikizela- a traditional ally of his – in order to do so.
Meanwhile, an attempt to adopt credentials will soon get underway – a process which could easily last until the morning.
The media will not be allowed in the plenary during this process.
‘TRYING TO PULL A FAST ONE’
While there has been some talk about negotiations between two main opposing groups in the battle to control the ANC in the Eastern Cape, the national executive committee members backing Mabuyane say his opponent Madikizela is attempting to force them into initiating negotiations.
This as the provincial task team itself failed to manage attempts to get the lobby groups to the negotiation table.
Eyewitness News understands there have been at least three attempts to start talks, with some in the province initiating a formal way to go about this.
The Eastern Cape’s 9th provincial conference outcomes are expected to have a major influence on what takes place when the ANC holds its national conference in December
While songs in support of different candidates are the order of the day, different lobby groups are calculating potential outcomes outside the venue.
Eyewitness News has been told by NEC members with an interest in this conference and the province’s role ahead of December, that Madikizela supporters are trying to pull a fast one on them, forcing them to start negotiations in earnest.
Talks have suggested they trade positions of the top five with one group occupying positions of deputy and secretary and the other claiming the remaining spots.
Horse trading – whether successful or not – is likely to continue right up until voting.
The conference is expected to wrap on Sunday.