Juju enters adult politics on Limpopo PEC

2011-12-20 12:38

ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema has officially entered “adult” politics by being elected to the provincial executive committee (PEC) of the ANC in Limpopo.

Although Malema got the loudest cheers from all when his name was read out by the Elections Agency during the announcement of the results this afternoon, he only managed to come in 17th out of the 20 additional members elected to the PEC.

Altogether 40 people were nominated.

Malema, dressed in a blue golf shirt and his by now signature beret, initially sat in the audience when the announcements were made, and then moved on to the stage with the other newly elected PEC members.

On Saturday during the opening session of the conference, Malema sat on stage, initially in the seat of honour next to Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale. This was frowned upon by his detractors.

Twenty members were elected to the PEC, in addition to the top five, who were elected by delegates at the ANC’s conference on Sunday.
Malema managed to garner 592 of the 1 072 unspoilt votes cast and was beaten by close ally Clifford Motsepe (597), who retired from the youth league recently.

Provincial ANC spokesperson and MEC David Masondo, also a former youth leader, managed to come in second with 638 votes.

The last day of the conference started almost four hours late today, with delegates spending most of the time behind closed doors, deliberating about conference resolutions.

ANC chief whip Mathole Motshekga, who headed the conference’s electoral commission, just before the announcements said the conference had nothing to do with the party’s succession battle ahead of its national elective conference in Mangaung in a year’s time.

“We should not allow anyone outside this province to convince us otherwise,” he said.

The conference provided a massive psychological boost for President Jacob Zuma’s detractors, and songs mocking him were sung by supporters of Malema and Mathale at the start of the conference.

Mathale’s win this weekend is set to be considered as the launch pad for an anti-Zuma campaign ahead of Mangaung.

Malema’s election came in defiance of his five-year suspension from the ANC for sowing division in the party.

He believes that this is a political plot against him.

His tenure in the PEC might be short-lived should his appeal fail next month.

Conference deliberations continued behind closed doors shortly after the PEC announcement.

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