ANC Women’s League president Angie Motshekga pulled no punches as she berated ANC leaders who “abuse” the league “to serve their own selfish interests”. A fiery Motshekga today told ANC leaders who were in attendance, including ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, that this “abusive tendency” particularly by provincial and regional chairpersons must stop. “The ANC leadership has become completely arrogant ... ANC chairs and regional chairs tell us who to choose – that’s abuse of office,” she charged. Motshekga was delivering her political report in front of 3000 delegates from various provinces who were attending the 12th elective conference in Irene, Pretoria. Motshekga said this also showed how entrenched patriarchy was in the ANC. “Patriarchy is abusive selfish and has to be condemned in the strongest terms.” She urged women to be more assertive and brave. “You must fight for space; say ‘no’ to abusive tendencies.” This, she added, was also a fight that must be taken up by branches. “Branches are important in the fight to get rid of patriarchy once and for all.” Motshekga was hoping to retain her position as league president. She was set to be contested by Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini. Delegates were deeply divided over who should lead the league. This was also evidenced by songs they sang, with most of them refusing to sing along when Motshekga or her secretary, Sisi Tolashe, led a song. Motshekga repeatedly called for unity, saying there was no need for women to “finish each other here”. “There is no crisis. We have to place a premium on unity,” she said.