Mpumalanga premier ready to join ANC's Top 6 – Youth League

2016-08-03 14:40

Hazyview – Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza is touted to be elected deputy president of the ANC, with political pundits tipping Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to succeed her former husband, President Jacob Zuma, at the ANC's next conference.

ANC Youth League deputy president Desmond Moela told journalists on Wednesday that Mabuza, who is also chairperson of the ANC in Mpumalanga, was ready to be elevated to the top six of the national executive committee (NEC). 

Speaking after casting his vote at the Mdzimba Primary School in Phola, Hazyview, Moela also encouraged young people in the province to vote. 

"We are encouraging the people of the province to vote for the ANC and thus to ensure that... Mabuza continues to lead the province. We know he is now ready to lead the national executive committee,” Moela said.

Moela said the question of unemployment was real, and it was for that reason the youth and all people of the province should support the ANC.

Succession debate

"To young people of this country, we urge you to go out and vote for the ANC and make sure we continue the legacy that was started by the organisation. To the opposition parties, they will not see light of day, especially here in Phola," Moela said. 

On the question of Mabuza’s ascendancy to political power at national level, Moela said he was not prepared to open a succession debate, but was aware of the support Mabuza enjoyed, and the willingness by many to have him serve in the NEC, and possibly to be considered for the position of deputy president of the ANC. 

The ANC elective conference is scheduled for December 2017. It is widely speculated that Mabuza, described in some quarters as the leader of the "Premier League" - thought to made up of Mabuza, Free State Premier Ace Magashule and North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo - is tipped to deputise Dlamini-Zuma, touted for the presidency of the ANC.  

Last month, ANCYL president Collen Maine allegedly told Mpumalanga delegates at a provincial conference that the Youth League would "back Mabuza for deputy president next year". 

Maine reportedly said: "Somebody from Mpumalanga must be elected to the top six of the ANC executive committee next year."

Only ANC can deliver

Provincial ANCYL chairperson Timothy Mashele told the media outside his voting station at Bondzeni High School, in Kildare, Bushbuckridge, where he matriculated in 2001, that people should vote for the ANC "to defend the legacy of the first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela". 

"I believe the people of this village and the province will vote for the ANC to defend the legacy of Nelson Mandela and also renew the mandate of the ANC to deliver services. We know there are many problems facing the community, but only the ANC can deliver the services," Mashele said. 

Mabuza's spokesperson Zibonele Mncwango said: "[The] premier can serve anywhere, where the ANC deploys him."

Mabuza was expected to cast his vote at the Lincoln Farm near his farmhouse in Barberton today, while provincial deputy chairperson Violet Siwela would cast hers in Dwaarsloop, outside Thulamahashe.

Meanwhile, DA provincial leader James Masango was expected to cast his vote at the Gert Sibande College in Evander near Secunda, with EFF provincial leader Collen Sedibe casting his in Phola.

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