ANCYL move not linked to Mantashe

By Drum Digital
28 March 2013

The decision made on the future of the ANC Youth League had nothing to do with ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe, the party said on Thursday.

"It had nothing to do with Gwede or anybody else," said African National Congress spokesman Jackson Mthembu.

"The NEC [national executive committee] is the leading structure. The NEC can change any recommendation."

He said the party's national working committee had made a recommendation to the NEC.

"All people in the ANC know how the ANC works."

He was responding to an article in the Mail & Guardian that a group of ANC leaders believed there was a concerted effort by President Jacob Zuma's supporters to undermine Mantashe's authority and weaken him politically.

It reported that Mantashe's recommendations on the youth league's future and that of the ANC in Limpopo was flatly rejected by a powerful bloc within the party's NEC close to Zuma.

Mantashe had recommended that the youth league's NEC be placed under political management, instead of disbanding it.

And while he supported disbanding the ANC provincial executive committee in Limpopo, he proposed that a neutral team led by veteran ANC leaders in the province form part of a task team to lead Limpopo until a provincial conference to elect new leaders had been convened.

The newspaper reported that Mantashe was also sidelined regarding key appointments in government and parastatals that took place without his knowledge.

ANC spokesman Keith Khoza told the newspaper he was not aware of any attempt to undermine Mantashe.

"Any matter, irrespective of who raised it, belongs to the structure he raised the matter in. In this case, the officials of the ANC discussed the matter and took it to the national working committee (NWC) and the committee took the matter to the NEC, which has the right to make its own determination. It was not about Gwede."

Mthembu agreed with this.

The newspaper reported that Mantashe had been tipped by supporters for the position of ANC deputy president and ultimately ANC president.

Others in the party wanted ANC treasurer Zweli Mkhize for ANC deputy president and were lobbying for African Union chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to replace Zuma as president.

-by Sapa

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