Mpuma ANC conference off to smooth start

2012-04-06 13:07

The African National Congress’ provincial elective conference in Nelspruit got off to a smooth start, the party in Mpumalanga has said.

“There have been no hitches at all, it is going well,” said spokesman Paul Mbenyane today.
Registration for the conference was completed last night.

“There are over 1 000 delegates, the most our provincial conference has ever had, and this shows that the ANC is growing in the province,” he said.

President Jacob Zuma delivered a two-hour speech before lunch and provincial party chairman David Mabuza would address the delegates in the afternoon.

Mabuza and health MEC Clifford Mkansi are expected to vie for the top party position during the event, held at Mbombela Stadium.

Mbenyane said the candidates were expected to be announced this evening between 8pm and 10pm.

Candidates would then submit their availability and more nominations from the floor would be processed.

Voting for the top spot would take place either tonight or tomorrow morning, he said.

Mabuza - reportedly a close ally of Zuma - received overwhelming support during the ANC regional conferences, with four regions showing their support for him.

However, he could face a tough fight as Cosatu, the ANC Youth League and the SA Communist Party have voiced their disapproval of him as leader.

Those who want Mabuza removed have repeatedly complained about widespread corruption, divisions within the ANC and political infighting.

His rival Mkansi is a former secretary of the Sondelani branch at Thulamahashe, outside Bushbuckridge.

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