With just few a days to go, the ANC’s 54th congress will obviously be the toughest yet.
ANC regional leaders in the Mpumalanga province are in a bid to rescue presidential contender Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma’s sinking campaign ship as five of the nine ANC provinces have declared support for Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Dlamini-Zuma has since been nominated by KZN, North West and Free State, with Mpumalanga nominating Unity.
On Thursday last week (8 Dec), Nkangala ANC chairman Speedy Mashilo convened what they say was a ‘caucus’ – attended by the region’s delegates – and inviting Bohlabela leader Gillion Mashego, Gert Sibande’s Muzi Chirwa and eHlanzeni’s Ngrayi Ngwenya.
Sources who attended this meeting in KwaMhlanga later on the day said it was chaired by Mashilo – and that both Mashego and Chirwa spoke and all told the delegates that they support Dlamini-Zuma.
Ngwenya didn’t come to the meeting but did send an apology, sources told the 013NEWS reporter.
Nkangala delegates were assured by Mashilo, Mashego and Chirwa that all is well with the NDZ ship, amidst Limpopo, Gauteng and the three cape provinces nominating Ramaphosa as President Jacob Zuma’s successor.
The four Mpumalanga regional leaders want provincial leader DD Mabuza to leave the province and go serve as the deputy president of the ANC.
“The caucus was meant to send a message that delegates should know that we support NDZ and that this thing of Unity should not worry them,” a delegate who attended the KwaMhlanga caucus said on Friday morning.
“They did say that we should not go all over the place pronouncing people, but we should know that we are NDZ,” the source said, adding that of the over 170 Nkangala delegates, 147 came to the Mashilo meeting and agreed to support NDZ.
“Chirwa and Mashego spoke and reaffirmed our support for comrade Nkosazana,” the source told the reporter.
Dlamini-Zuma was during BGMs nominated by only 123 of the total Mpumalanga branches, Ramaphosa only 117 and Mabuza’s Unity receiving 223 branch nomination votes.
The regional leaders want Mabuza’s Unity delegates turned into NDZ votes in conference in order to allow him to be the deputy president.
Mashilo confirmed convening the meeting and said his other counterparts were invited to demonstrate to delegates the support of his region for NDZ.
“Let me not speak for the province, I’m not allowed to speak on its behalf,” Mashilo said when the reporter asked him whether as Mpumalanga they support NDZ, “but as Nkangala yes we support NDZ,” he said over the phone.
(edited by ZK)
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