The two-day meeting will now occur behind closed doors.
Mpumalanga ANC acting chairman Mandla Ndlovu has reversed a decision to invite journalists to the party’s provincial executive committee Lekgotla scheduled for the weekend.
In a statement released late on Friday morning, Ndlovu said the decision to no longer have journalists at the PEC Lekgotla occurred “due to unforeseen circumstances”.
“Attention all media,” the statement read.
“Please be informed that due to unforeseen circumstances the ANC provincial executive committee will no longer require the media coverage of the ANC PEC Lekgotla taking place from Saturday the 3rd and 4th February 2018 as per the previous invitation,” it said.
“However, an invitation will be extended to yourselves to host a media briefing scheduled for next week on the resolutions taken from the ANC PEC Lekgotla,” the statement read.
Ndlovu is expected to deliver a political overview as the acting chair of the Mpumalanga ANC and journalists had been invited to come cover this particular speech.
“We apologise for any inconvenience caused,” the statement released by his office’s communication assistant Sibusiso Themba read.
SEE ALSO: Mpumalanga ANC postpones January 8 statement
The Lekgotla, to occur at the Nutting House Lodge in Mbombela, is expected to discuss amongst other things the succession race in the province.
Journalists had been asked to come register for their accreditation to cover Ndlovu addressing the Lekgotla but then now this will be a closed session.
DD Mabuza who was elected the deputy president of the ANC on 18 December 2017 will have a successor when a special provincial congress is held in April 2018 as well as Violet Siwela, his deputy, who was elected as an additional member of the national executive committee in Nasrec, Soweto.
A large number of contestants are vying for Mabuza’s seat – Ndlovu himself, Pat Ngomane, Sasekani Manzini, Fish Mahlalela, Peter Nyoni, David Dube, Lucky Ndinisa, Charles Makola and Lassy Chiwayo.
SEE ALSO: Lobby group wants Mandla Ndlovu as chair, Speedy Mashilo as deputy and Pat Ngomane as secretary
(edited by MLM)
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This is the full speech delivered by ANC chairman David Mabuza during the ANC’s provincial executive committee lekgotla held at Casa Do Sol Hotel in Hazyview on 3 September 2016.
Allow me to welcome all of you present today. This PEC Lekgotla is the first after the conclusion of the Local Government Elections which took place on the 3rd of August last month.
This was the most gruelling and tough elections in the history of our organisation and indeed in the history of our country following the advent of democracy in 1994. We knew it was going to be difficult, however, we were not prepared for the poor showing that the ruling party experienced in some provinces especially in Gauteng and Eastern Cape.
Whilst the national figures at 53.91% to confirm that people of this country still believe in the ANC as a credible political platform to take their aspirations forward in pursuit of an equitable, just and better life, the situation on the ground paints a different picture.
A picture that says our people are not happy and therefore they are expressing their unhappiness by abstaining and not participating in elections.
The African National Congress did not suffer losses because the opposition performed exceptionally better, we suffered losses through non participation by our own traditional supporters. if indeed we had suffered heavy losses because our supporters had voted for the opposition, we would not be having coalition governments all over the show.
Of the 26.3 million registered voters throughout the country, only 15.1 million cast their votes leaving a whopping 11.1 million people who decided not to vote. This is a clear indication that a vast majority of our voters stayed away from the polling stations for various reasons.
Whilst some of these reasons could be linked to poor weather conditions, elections that are in the middle of the week making it impossible for the people to travel to where their registered and come back in time for work or students who are at universities and colleges and poor voter education and voter registration drives, we cannot deny that the reality that a significant number of our voters are beginning to lose interest in casting their ballots.
We agree with comrade Jackson Mthembu the ANC Chief Whip in National Parliament that the ANC is bleeding, is hurting and feels pain.
However, we can’t sit back and continue to lick our wounds and hope that our help will drop from heaven like manna.
We need to do a thorough analysis and introspection, reflect on our performance at the polls and see where we may have done things wrong, correct our mistakes and humbly ourselves before the people.
Even before the elections, it had become very clear that these elections were not about service delivery, opinion polls after polls had shown that the ANC government on the main was doing well on service delivery.
These elections were fought over complex issues that were driven by perceptions and aspersions that were cast by the opposition and the media portraying the ruling party as a corrupt, arrogant and disinterested in dealing with socio economic challenges facing our people.
As the Deputy President of the ANC Cde Cyril Ramaphosa said during elections, this is untrue, it’s a lie and propaganda that is meant to discredit and harm the image of the ruling party.
It was Adolf Hitler the fascist leader of Germany whose government committed genocide of unprecedented proportions against the Jews and other minorities during the Second World War, who said “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” The opposition parties assisted by the media were relentless and very aggressive in rubbishing the standing of the ANC in the eyes of our people.
This could be one of the reasons why some people may have been discouraged and developed a voter apathy syndrome which prevented the from going to the polls. We must find a better strategy in dealing with this negative onslaught against the ANC. We need to improve in communicating ANC led government success stories.
We thank the people of this Province who demonstrated once again that the ANC remains their only hope as we build a better future that takes Mpumalanga forward. A staggering 70% of people in this province voted for the ANC, the highest percentage by far in all provinces.
We can’t ignore the fact that our support has dropped by 8% compared to previous elections. We believe that voter apathy is behind this decline and we will do everything possible to get our supporters back on the voting polls. This we will do by stepping up our efforts in service delivery and frequent and constant feedback to our voters.
We are the only province that has full control of all municipalities, No municipality in this province is governed by the opposition and none are governed by a coalition. However we don’t take this voter confidence and support for granted.
Let me take this opportunity to thank all the leaders, cadres and ordinary members of our movement with whom the criss-crossed the province to interact with the citizens during the election period. Special word of appreciation to the ANC volunteers whose invaluable work and sacrifice has always carried us to better heights.
We have delivered water and electricity to communities that never had these basic services before and we will continue to do so with impetus and sense of accountability. We call upon our newly elected councillors to work harder and stay very close to their communities so that they can understand and appreciate their challenges.
We do not expect them to contribute 50% of their salaries to the ANC, however we expect 100% of their commitment to the noble cause of bringing better life people who voted them in to office.
We all know that more work still needs to be done to address key development and service delivery challenges facing our communities.
We are very much alive to the reality that we we need to face the challenge of unemployment head-on and get our young people off the streets into employment. We know that our people need houses alongside basic services such clean water and sanitation.
We gather at this lekgotla having listened to the concerns of our people. During the door-to-door campaigns, our people raised issues that are of high concern to them which include among others, inconsistent and unreliable supply of basic services, ANC leadership at branch level that is continuously at war with itself. People fighting over positions and state resources.
We must be united in the face of challenges that we are confronted with. Our focus should be on mobilisation of necessary leadership capacities at all levels to ensure that we respond to the challenges facing our communities.
The next five years at local government level and the remaining three years at national and provincial levels are the only windows left to us to convince our people that indeed we remain the only credible organisation that has their interested as heart.
Should we falter and stumble, our people have already demonstrated to us that the power is in their hands through a vote, they can take it and give it to someone else or they can just withhold it by not voting. Either way, the ANC stands to lose. This should serve as a wake-up call to us. Let’s stop fighting among ourselves. Lets work for our people.
As we move forward, we are expecting all the spheres of government, including local government, to work together and ensure that what we promised our people during the election campaigns and through the local government manifesto is delivered.
We will need a radical approach over the next five years to drive economic transformation to create employment right next to areas where our people stay. This will require a concerted effort to support the development of township economies.
We need to revisit all Local Economic Development strategies of our municipalities and focus on small industrial parks which will support small businesses and cooperatives.
We need to mobilise young people and implement a comprehensive programme of action to deal with the challenges of youth unemployment. We now have a youth desk in the office of the Premier and we expect this desk to lead in the mobilisation of public and private sector institutions to prioritise programmes aimed at enhancing youth employment and entrepreneurship.
The ANC Youth League should be at the forefront of this mobilisation.
Our efforts of up-skilling our people are beginning to bear fruits. More and more of recently trained young people are getting placements in the private sector, we call upon all municipalities to budget for and take these young people on leaderships.
We need to improve the quality of service delivery through focused and realistic integrated Development Programmes that are aligned with Provincial and National Development Initiatives.
Our main focus remains the provision of basic services
- Bulk water and sanitation infrastructure
- Provision of electricity, and
- Roads to ensure functionality
- Creation of jobs through the township and village economies
Of utmost importance we need to ensure that the ANC-led government at all
levels improve so that we instil confidence in communities that the ANC remains their political home of choice towards changing their quality of life.
The time of slogans and rhetoric has come to and end. We are raising a generation that never experienced the vestiges of apartheid. In fact we are told by some of our own people within the movement who are acutely aware of the very long term adverse effects of colonialism and apartheid stretching over 300 years, that after 22 years of democracy we can no longer blame these evil systems of oppression for our underdevelopment.
I would like to appeal to you all that as the commissions deliberate and take resolutions, let us focus on what will have a significant impact in changing the lives of our people within the available limited resources.
From this lekgotla, we must emerge with a programme of action that is devoid of being a wish list but that is comprehensive, realistic and promotes inclusive socio economic development with special emphasis on taking interest of the poor and marginalised.