Guest Column

NEC that lacks discipline will tear apart the ANC

2018-02-05 09:14
Members and supporters, draped in ANC colours, gather to celebrate the 106th anniversary at Buffalo Stadium in East London. Here they are seen cutting the cake. Picture: Leon Sadiki

Members and supporters, draped in ANC colours, gather to celebrate the 106th anniversary at Buffalo Stadium in East London. Here they are seen cutting the cake. Picture: Leon Sadiki

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Rebone Tau

The 54th national elective conference of the ANC urged all members to uphold unity. However, some of our leaders seem to be publicly showing signs of divisions within the ANC national executive committee (NEC).

Cleary, unity is just a dream in the current political landscape within the NEC. With the NEC divided, the organisation will also be divided moving forward.

The current NEC has been in office for just a month but some of its members preach one thing and make divisive statements at the same time.

Our secretary general (SG), Ace Magashule, made pronouncements recently that did not make sense to us as members when he spoke at the ANCYL rally in KZN. ANC NEC member Bheki Cele subsequently made remarks that were also unhelpful in the promotion of unity.

Unity without a common vision is just a myth and it is dangerous for the movement. One can say that this unity is artificial. 

Young people need to rise and reject such behaviour from the leadership of the ANC. One really wonders why these comrades, who are supposed to be our leaders, are busy dividing the movement. Young people must stop clapping hands for populists within our beloved movement.

The same leaders who claim to love the ANC also display questionable behaviour. They continue to tear the movement apart. What kind of ANC is my generation going to inherit if we have leaders who don’t want to build the organisation and protect its image?

The SG of the ANC needs to understand that he has a political responsibility to be the custodian of organisational processes. He needs to be the champion of unity as it was resolved at the conference.

Comrade Bheki Cele is also part of the collective that was given a mandate by branches on unity. It can’t be that comrades tomorrow will want to condemn the behaviour of the membership when they don’t practice what they preach. They don’t have to be friends, but they need to have the best interest of the organisation at heart. No one owns the ANC; the ANC is an organisation of the people.

There are comrades who don’t want a stable ANC because they survive through divisions and that needs to stop moving forward. It’s high time that ANC NEC members that are doing things outside of the collective must be taken to the Disciplinary Committee.

It can’t be business as usual in the movement for ANC leaders who are divisive and who continue to make remarks that don’t build unity. We lack discipline in the movement and it must start with us having disciplined leaders. How will they discipline members when some of them don’t know how to behave in public?

If the leadership does not welcome the outcomes of the conference, how do they expect the membership to accept those outcomes and rally behind the elected leadership at the conference?

Unity must start with the officials of the ANC. If we continue to see some within the top six showing divisions so early, it means we are just heading for disaster moving forward. Fighting takes so much energy which we should be putting into building the movement and bringing back activism in it. We need to make sure that members of the ANC are patriotic and active citizens that will champion the struggle of the people.

We should be focusing on making sure gatekeeping is a thing of the past and that factionalism is done away with moving forward. We need to make sure we build branches not for conferences, but branches that will have programs that speak to the people and that will advance radical economic transformation. 

We need an ANC that will fight racism as we celebrate the year of our first democratic president of the Republic of South Africa, the late former president Nelson Mandela.

Political education is needed in the ANC and not only for members, but for ANC NEC members too as they lack discipline.

One hopes that former president Thabo Mbeki and former president Zuma will both attend NEC meetings moving forward. Their wisdom is needed in making sure that the current NEC rectifies mistakes of the past and does not repeat some of the mistakes that have brought the glorious movement into disrepute.  

We are going to national general elections next year and we need to all volunteer for the ANC to be working together and not tearing each other apart for selfish interests.

- Rebone Tau is an ANC BEC member of Ward 42 in the Tshwane region.

Disclaimer: News24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24.

Read more on:    ace maga­shule  |  unity  |  anc
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