‘Sack ANC leaders’

2011-06-14 00:00

ANGRY local African National Congress members flocked in their numbers to air their grievances to the national ANC task team that sat at the AF Wood Hall in Boom Street yesterday.

Members want the local regional executive committee sacked.

They want the newly appointed deputy mayor of Msunduzi, Alpha Shelembe, and some of the executive committee members (Exco) removed from their posts, saying they are part of the leadership that brought the municipality to its knees and cannot be rewarded by being put back to run the municipality.

There were also calls for an inquiry into the KZN provincial executive committee's (PEC) poor handling of grievances in the region and the role it played in supporting unsuitable candidates for senior council positions.

There was widespread criticism of the KZN premier, who is also head of the ANC in the province, Dr Zweli Mkhize, for his limp-wristed handling of the situation.

People were asking who is in charge is it the PEC or the REC?

The chairperson of the task team, national Minister of Home Affairs Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, arrived with the Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, at about 10 am.

They were greeted by a packed hall and only left the centre well after 7 pm.

The hearing was closed to the media and journalists sitting outside the AF Wood Hall were told that Internal ANC matters were being discussed.

The task team was set up last month by the party’s national executive committee following countrywide dissatisfaction at the way in which candidates were nominated for the local government election.

Dlamini-Zuma had been expected in the city since last week to deal with the troubled Moses Mabhida region.

Disgruntled cadres have engaged in a two-week long sit-in at the local REC offices protesting the appointment of the new leadership.

On Saturday night the ANC offices in Jabu Ndlovu Street were torched by unknown persons.

One of the protesters and a leading local ANC activist, Sibongile Mkhize, said they had eagerly awaited the arrival of the task team and they hope that they will sort out the mess in the region.

Mkhize said the regional leadership have displayed arrogance in dealing with members’ grievances.

Journalists camped outside the AF Wood Hall hoping to be called in for a press briefing, but this did not happen.

According to sources, representation was made to the task team by former Exco member Themba Zungu who questioned why no investigation was carried out against all former senior councillors who were demoted; and how come some were allowed to be brought back into the council while others are still in limbo with no proof that they were part of any wrongdoing.

As she left the hall, Dlamini-Zuma confirmed that the task team had a whole day of listening to grievances.

She said problems raised were ongoing and that her team will need more than a day to resolve the many issues discussed. She said they will inform the members of their solution once everything has been finalised.

Police maintained a strong presence in the area but no incidents were reported.

Last night the REC called a closed meeting in the city hall of the top five members of each branch. According to sources, the meeting was to gain support from branches to counter the complaints presented to the task team.

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