Pretoria - The ANC leadership in Tshwane has described the loss of the city during the municipal elections as the lowest point of its political life.
"It constitutes the lowest moment in our political life. When we took office as this collective leadership the ANC was in power and this collective leadership presided over an ANC that lost power in the capital city," chairperson Kgosientso Ramokgopa told reporters in Pretoria.
"That is being frank and candid. We have had a discussion as the office bearers and we are going to take this conversation to the collective of the regional executive committee so that we are able to provide a more comprehensive response to the situation."
Ramokgopa said they were ready to work and ensure that the ANC is able to reclaim its glory in the next cycle of elections. He said it was unheard of to have strategical points of government in the hands of the opposition.
The ANC lost control of the municipality when it failed to attain the majority of votes. None of the political parties in the city managed to get over 50% of the votes, meaning a coalition government would be necessary. Opposition parties have agreed in principle to work together to oust the ANC.
Ramokgopa said the party should use the current situation to rebuild ahead of the 2019 elections.
"We can't have a capital city of a democratic republic, you can't have the epicentre of the African economy that is Johannesburg in the hands of the opposition. [These are] real substantive and material losses to the ANC. The agenda of transformation gets to be undermined.
"Let's look at it differently, Cape Town, Johannesburg, Tshwane put together, they constitute close to 30% of the GDP and they are almost home to about 25 % of the population. These are significant losses. When you go to Cape Town, it's the seat of the legislature, Tshwane is the seat of the executive and Johannesburg is the heartbeat of the SA economy," said Ramokgopa.
He said deep introspection on the ANC's part was needed to improve its position before the next elections.
"We need to confront that reality. The sooner we accept it the better. More significantly is how we respond to these challenges. Programmatically, self-introspection, being very candid, brutally honest with what the issues are, we must respond and ensure we are able to address this issues going forward," he said.