The group used the 106th birthday celebration of the ANC to make itself more known but then also to push a campaign in the succession race.
The Practical Radical Economic Transformation (PRET) group has made a new twist in the battle for the seat of Mpumalanga ANC chair, dumping Sasekani Manzini as their favoured candidate and opting for Mbombela municipal speaker Mandla Msibi.
The group previously announced they would back Manzini, the spokeswoman of the party in the province, but has now made a U-turn, saying they have realised that both Manzini and acting chair Mandla Ndlovu are “quite factional” leaders.
“Our members who are also ANC members from the branches refuse to participate in factions,” PRET President Themba Sgudla said over the phone.
“This thing of factions must end in the ANC. Factions, factions, everyday, no,” he said.
He said they will now support Msibi, a proposal made by their members, “as they believe Msibi is not attached to any particular grouping”.
“Msibi is the only person they realised is not factional. It’s not me, it’s the branch members,” Sgudla said.
“We are sick and tired of factions,” Sgudla said.
“We want all people to be allowed in the ANC for the end-goal of changing the lives of the poor. We don’t want a caste of friends to elect itself for its own interests. No. We want everyone to have a voice in the ANC,” Sgudla said.
Campaigns to take ANC deputy president DD Mabuza’s position in Mpumalanga have already started – with a score of contestants vying for the seats.
Sgudla said they are going to Bushbuckridge the coming weekend to make their members’ wishes of Msibi to emerge known.
“We will fill the Acornhoek stadium and Msibi will talk,” he said.
He questioned where Ndlovu, the current secretary of the ANC in Mpumalanga, gets “the mandate to move and abandon the position of secretary”.
“Ndlovu was elected by conference to become the secretary. Now he wants to leave this position and become the chairperson. Where does his get this mandate? That’s just his personal ambitions and his friends in the ANC and we can’t support that. We represent unemployed people and our members don’t believe Ndlovu wants to represent the poor when he wants to be elected like that,” Sgudla said.
The province will fill Mabuza’s position and that of his deputy Violet Siwela and additional member Candith Mashego-Dlamini who were elected into the national executive committee on 18 December 2018.
(edited by ZK)
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