ANC needs a united slate to fight 2019 election - Mashatile

2017-07-02 21:23
Paul Mashatile (File,  News24)

Paul Mashatile (File, News24)

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Johannesburg - ANC Gauteng chairperson Paul Mashatile is confident that the province will back a winning candidate at the party's elective conference, he said on Sunday. 

Speaking to News24 at the party's policy conference in Nasrec Expo Centre, Mashatile said, although the province had not pronounced on who their preferred candidate would be for the position of ANC president, they will spend the coming months evaluating candidates. 

"We don't want to pronounce names. We will come to that by September. I think we are going to win this time," Mashatile said.

Gauteng previously backed former president Kgalema Motlanthe who lost to President Jacob Zuma - leading to assertions that the province "never backs a winner".

However, there is heavy speculation that Gauteng will back presidential hopeful Cyril Ramaphosa.

The West Rand region in Gauteng and its youth league have already pronounced on Ramphosa.

News24 reported that ANC West Rand region chairperson Boyce Maneli, during a public lecture, said any woman who wanted to take herself seriously would not want her leadership to be associated with gender because that is all people would blame her for if she made mistake in the process.

Its ANCYL regional chairperson, William Matsheke, said what they wanted was an ANC president and not a female president, before endorsing Ramaphosa as the ideal candidate to take the party forward, News24 reported.

Mashatile said the province wanted a united leadership rather than winner takes all. He said the provincial leadership was still discussing ways of finding a unified leadership. 

"Our view is that we don't want a slate, we want consensus. We want to agree. We don't want one particular group to say this is it and nothing else. We want to say let's have the best among us, create that combination [to] lead all members of the ANC because we are going to be fighting tough elections in 2019. We really need a united leadership," Mashatile said.

Th ANC scraped through the 2014 elections with 53% in Gauteng.

Its electoral support declined even further, with the province losing two of its metros, Johannesburg and Tshwane to a DA-led coalition.

It also lost Mogale City but managed to win it back last week following a motion of no confidence in the DA mayor. 

Mashatile said the province was "treading carefully" on the talks of increasing the top six. He said this was because some may be pushing for this change in the top six to push their own factions. 

"We are just treading carefully on that. We are discussing with other comrades. In my input to the Gauteng provincial policy conference, I did say to the province [that] these things are still being refined... It's still early stages and provinces must talk among themselves."

The policy conference will start discussing policy proposals in earnest on Monday, after spending two days looking at party renewal.  

Read more on:    paul mashatile  |  johannesburg  |  ancpolicy17  |  anc policy  |  anc leadership race

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