Maine calls on ANC 'old guard' to let young leaders take charge

2016-06-02 07:03
ANCYL president Collen Maine speaks in Kliptown, Soweto. (Mpho Raborife, News24)

ANCYL president Collen Maine speaks in Kliptown, Soweto. (Mpho Raborife, News24)

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Johannesburg - ANC Youth League president Collen Maine says young leaders within the ruling party are ready to rise to the occasion and lead South Africa.

"Recent experiences have proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the ideas of the old guard... they no longer have energy to implement them. So we are ready," Maine told those who had attended the Youth League's launch of Youth Month and the commemoration of the 1976 June 16 uprising in Soweto.

"The hour of the youth has struck; the youth must rise to the occasion and take charge."

He said the youth should thank the "old guard" in the party for all the work they had done to get South Africa to where it was today, but urged the senior leaders to retire and allow the youth to lead.

"Those who are in their 70s [heading towards] retirement [should] allow new blood, which is in touch with the basic demands of South Africans which are younger, to lead."

Maine said he was not inciting the removal of the current leadership within the ruling party, but was merely making a point that young people needed to take up the responsibility of taking the country forward.

"We are not saying that we will go to the offices of government and say 'Leave!' or to Luthuli house and say 'so and so, leave!' but we are saying that at the right time, we must make sure that those who are given responsibility to take our revolution forward, are young people."

Radical economic transformation

Maine said young people in South Africa were questioning what freedom really meant for them personally and said the youth league would intensify its calls for radical economic transformation.

"Our people don't eat slogans and the rich history of the African National Congress. The leadership and the government of the ANC must move with speed."

He did however acknowledge how far the country had come under the ruling party's leadership.

"South Africa was not what it is today before 1994 so our government has achieved a lot.

"But...we deemed it necessary that we must be very critical of our own ANC without hurling insult at the leadership because we are taught as Africans to respect our elders, but we will not be afraid of raising whatever we want to raise with the ANC."

Read more on:    anc  |  ancyl  |  collen maine  |  johannesburg  |  politics

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