Overwhelming support for Zuma, allies

2012-12-18 17:28
(Picture: AFP)

(Picture: AFP)

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Bloemfontein - It was an overwhelming victory for President Jacob Zuma, his allies and supporters on Tuesday as he secured a second term as the ANC's leader.

Zuma won the presidency with 2 983 votes to his deputy Kgalema Motlanthe, who received 991 votes at the party's national elective conference.

Of the 3 977 votes two were spoilt and there was one abstention.

Delegates in the plenary marquee erupted in cheers before the electoral commission could finish announcing Zuma's win.

Most of the delegates chanted "Zuma, Zuma, Zuma".

They waved ANC flags, blew vuvuzelas and shouted "Phinda Msholozi" (do it again, Msholozi).

Zuma took his place on the stage smiling and shaking hands with people around him.

It took a while for delegates to settle down so that the announcement of results could continue.

The hotly contested position of ANC deputy president was won by businessman Cyril Ramaphosa with an overwhelming 3 018 votes.

He was contested by Mathews Phosa and Tokyo Sexwale, the candidates for those calling for a change of leadership in the party. Phosa received 470 votes and Sexwale 463.

There were 13 spoilt votes and 13 abstentions.

Cheers for Ramaphosa

The marquee vibrated with cheers as Ramaphosa moved towards the stage.

Security had to clear a path as people flocked around him.

Ramaphosa hugged Zuma as he reached his place on the stage.

National chair Baleka Mbete retained her position. She beat Thandi Modise with 3 010 votes to 939.

There were five spoilt votes and 23 abstentions.

Zuma supporters from Limpopo mocked those who opposed the president and his allies.

They rolled their hands, as is done in soccer matches to call for a player's substitution, and added a thumbs-down to it.

"Change?... uhmmm..," they murmured.

Some held up copies of the New Age newspaper which had a picture of the Zuma slate on the front page.

Top six

The position of secretary-general was retained by Gwede Mantashe.

He was contested by Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula.

Mantashe received 3 058 votes while Mbalula got 901.

There were six spoilt votes and 12 abstentions.

Delegates sang "we want a secretary with content".

Mantashe and Ramaphosa shared a hug, congratulating each other.

Former presidency spokesperson Jessie Duarte was elected unopposed as Mantashe's deputy.

As she made her way to the stage delegates chanted her name.

The final top six position of treasurer general went to KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Zweli Mkhize.

He was voted in with 2 988 votes, beating Gauteng chairperson Paul Mashatile, who received 961 votes.

There were six spoilt votes and 22 abstentions.

The newly elected officials had all appeared on the so-called "Zuma slate".

During the lunch time break supporters stood outside the marquee and celebrated by singing songs in support of their leaders.

- SAPA

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