Zuma: ANC close to million members
Johannesburg - The ANC is close to reaching its target of one million members before it celebrates its centenary next year, President Jacob Zuma said on Monday.
The party's membership stood at 914 852 up from 749 112 in September last year, he said in a statement delivered at Lilliesleaf Farm in Rivonia, Johannesburg. The ANC had registered growth of 198 057 members in under a year.
"We have to ensure that our growth in numbers does not change the character of the ANC.
"The recruitment programme will therefore be anchored on two main pillars, a massive recruitment campaign targeting new potential members on the one hand, and a focus on political education, on the other," Zuma said.
"The campaign will teach our members to adhere to the principles of unity, selfless service, collective leadership, democratic centralism, internal debates, humility, honesty, hard work, constructive criticism and self-criticism, discipline and mutual respect. These are all part of the traditions of the movement."
The ANC would work "round the clock" to achieve its goal of a million members by early next year.
"Every member, every cadre, every branch and every structure, will be seized with this very important task guided by the adage that 'every member is an organiser'," he said.
"We have also put together a team that will work consistently with all our structures in the provinces and regions, to revive lapsed memberships and to recruit new members."
Zuma said to honour former president Nelson Mandela, the ANC on Monday launched its one million membership recruitment drive.
"The ANC is immensely proud to have Madiba as its leader. We are proud to share his legacy with all our people and the world today, on Nelson Mandela International Day.
"The mobilisation campaign is in line with the resolution of the 1942 ANC national conference, which directed that the ANC must have one million members.
"The drive is also in commemoration of Madiba's famous M-Plan, the underground recruitment campaign that created a network that ensured dynamic contact with the membership despite the repression of the 1950s," he said.
Zuma was travelling to Mandela's home in Qunu, in the Eastern Cape, on Monday afternoon to "to give him the good news that his organisation is growing".