ANC leaders gear up for NEC
Johannesburg - The ANC's national executive meeting (NEC) starts on Thursday, with discussion expected to focus on the party's policy conference in June.
The five-day meeting would pave way for the release of the African National Congress' draft policy documents, which South Africans can interrogate and comment on, spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said last week.
The public would play a key role in helping the ruling party formulate its policies.
Mthembu said the NEC would consider all draft and discussion documents before releasing them to ANC branches and the public for comment ahead of the policy conference in June.
The ruling party's policy and elective conferences this year would fine-tune government thinking on economic matters.
Its draft position on nationalisation would be sent to branches in a booklet containing all the party's proposed policies on, among others, the economy, education and health.
ANC Youth League president Julius Malema, the main driver behind the idea of nationalising mines and land expropriation without compensation, would attend the NEC meeting with his secretary Sindiso Magaqa, The Star newspaper reported on Wednesday.
The party membership of Malema, Magaqa, ANCYL spokesperson Floyd Shivambu and three other ANCYL leaders was suspended in November for bringing the party into disrepute and sowing division in the party.
An announcement on the outcome of their appeals is pending.
Malema, who was allowed to take part in NEC deliberations, was reportedly expected to use the platform to lobby the 90 NEC members to rally behind the youth leaders, should their appeal against their suspensions be unsuccessful.
Contacted for comment on Wednesday, both Magaqa and Shivambu hung up their phones and did not answer after several more attempts to contact them.
The ANC has indicated the disciplinary cases against the youth league leaders will not be discussed by the NEC.
On Monday, party spokesperson Keith Khoza told the Mail & Guardian that no applications to the NEC concerning the suspensions could be made until the appeal process had been finalised.
The national disciplinary committee of appeal is chaired by Cyril Ramaphosa and includes Planning Minister Trevor Manuel, Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, ANC head of planning and evaluation Jessie Duarte and NEC member Brigitte Mabandla.