ANC’s Mpumalanga leadership crisis

2011-09-06 14:34

Mpumalanga ANC members in the Ehlanzeni region have risen up against the party’s leadership – seemingly in a show of opposition against a second term for premier David Mabuza.

The branches were having a crisis meeting in Nelspruit with provincial deputy chairperson Charles Makola, secretary Lucky Ndinisa as well as Ehlanzeni regional executive committee (REC) leaders deputy chairperson Peter Nyoni and secretary Pat Ngomane.

Their concerns are that:

» Certain members had their membership status deleted from the database. Some of the protesters, who spoke to City Press outside the meeting, said these members were deleted because they were opposed to a second term for Premier David Mabuza.

» The REC disbanded branches where they did not have their preferred leaders.

» REC members divided ANC members in Mbombela branches by allegedly giving those who agreed with them municipal jobs via text messages.

» REC members excluded certain members from meetings where important decisions were taken.

Today’s meeting follows two incidents over the past month where the members stormed into the ANC provincial office in Nelspruit to demand answers from Ndinisa after complaining about the alleged manipulation of branch memberships.

“The REC has been violating the constitution of the organisation. Certain branch members are told to attend meetings where new branches are launched while others are excluded,” said a Mbombela branch member.“ One REC member even sent text messages to certain members inviting them to apply for jobs in Mbombela municipality.

That’s not the way the organisation should be run,” he said. The REC members are accused of manipulating the branch memberships in order to ensure that the regional conference, which will take place next month, elects leaders that will, in turn, campaign for Mabuza in the provincial conference set for 2012.

Provincial ANC spokesperson Paul Mbenyane said the party was aware of the complaints. “They came to the provincial office last week. We’re aware of these complaints and believe there will be a solution,” Mbenyane said.

Meanwhile, lobby groups that want to dislodge Mabuza have begun campaigning in other regions, namely, Gert Sibande, Nkangala and Bohlabela. The groups want Makola, legislature member Fish Mahlalela or health MEC Clifford Mkasi to be the provincial chairperson.

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