ANC Lower South Coast not ready to hold its conference

EVEN though the African National Congress (ANC) had held smooth provincial conferences over the weekend, the party’s Lower South Coast co-ordinator Mzwandile Mkhwanazi admits the region is not ready to hold its conference just yet.

The regional task team coordinator told the South Coast Fever in a telephonic interview this week that LSC, which is home to the ANC’s second largest membership, would not hold its elective conference as there are so many issues that needed to be dealt with within the movement.

“We thought, let’s put conferences on hold, prepare and ensure that outstanding matters that needed to be dealt with had finalised,” said Mkhwanazi

A source within the ANC claims that the Lower South Coast region would be subjected to assessment before a determination was made for them to go ahead with their conferences.

“The region had been affected by the killings recently, but also, there has been political tensions which must be addressed quite honestly,” said the source. “We do not have a conference for the sake of having a conference, but we do want to build an organisation that is united and vibrant,” he added.

Some members of the ANC’s newly elected provincial executive are allegedly divided over whether LSC region should be focusing on leadership battles, instead of the fast-looming 2019 general elections, with some pushing for regional conference to be put on hold until after the election.

Another source told the Fever that the perceptions of violence and its role in the ANC’s leadership contests, was a serious and worrying perception that some thought party members were targeting each other, purely because they held different political views.

“The reality is that there are people who have lost their lives and we are quite concerned about that. We have not yet established that those people have died because of dissenting views on political issues.

Some are raising that this is because of local government issues or positions in municipalities. It is a subject of interrogation.

The region has also seen a growing split, as some sought to put their faith behind Mkhwanazi’s bid to become the party’s regional chairperson. Others backed Ugu Mayor Mondli Chiliza

In April ANC spokesperson Selvan Chetty said the NEC was to evaluate whether the region was ready, in order to enhance unity and preparations for the upcoming elections.

A meeting of the NEC deployees and the PIC was scheduled with the ANC LSC on April 10. However, the then PIC coordinator, Sihle Zikalala, who is now the provincial chairperson, called its meeting off. Subsequently the NEC took a decision that the regional conference be postponed until further notice.