Pretoria - The ANC Youth League needs to renew its character, making it a cutting-edge organisation in the 21st century, its former deputy president Ronald Lamola said."We must move away from just being a protest organisation but also plan for the future... the youth league must mobilise to adapt to changing conditions in the country but also to changing conditions globally," he told News24."It can't continue to be the youth league formed in 1944. For it to infuse new thinking and knowledge in the ANC, it will need to adapt to the society of the 21st century."Lamola said the ANCYL needed to move at a "supersonic speed" to achieve this, and must use cutting edge knowledge and technology to deal with issues."It can't be following events in society. It must be at the forefront."This is where people must be able to imagine the future... So the youth league must be the cutting edge of technology, new thinking and provide solutions in society."Elective congressLamola is expected to stand for ANC Youth League leader at its national elective congress in September.He was acting ANCYL president after Julius Malema was expelled and was heading up the league when it was dissolved in 2013.Since then Lamola, a practising attorney, has completed his LLM in corporate law at the University of Pretoria and graduated in May this year.He has also started his own legal practice.Lamola still believes the ANCYL has the power to effect change in the country especially in terms of the economy.There were new economies emerging such as the green economy and the nuclear economy. The youth league had to advocate for those economies, he said."There are many jobs that can be set aside for young people because these are new economies which are emerging and nobody can claim to be an expert in those fields."Everyone will be learning from whoever is building the nuclear power station, whoever will be dealing with the new green economy and so forth..."Own voiceHe said the new ANCYL, although part of the ANC, needed to have its own voice and bring new ideas to the table.However, it still needed to be disciplined and respectful - something it was accused of failing at under former leader Julius Malema.It had the potential to breathe new life into the ruling ANC."The reality is that the youth league is the youth league of the ANC. But the youth league is not the ANC."If the youth league deals with issues, it must be able to be militant, radical and stay true to its character."But obviously there is a need for some level of discipline and respect. It must be able to speak without fear or favour, or even without any prejudice to anybody."