ANC's political school looking to have qualifications accredited

2020-02-04 20:00
David Masondo. (City Press, file)

David Masondo. (City Press, file)

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The ANC will have a new criteria that members must meet if they want to stand in the 2021 local government elections.

The principal of the party's political school, David Masondo who is also the deputy finance minister, said while the aim was to have those seeking to lead in structures beyond branch level complete 70% of the school's modules, it would not be ready for this when the country holds its next municipal polls.

The political school, which is currently digital, offers three modules via its website and aims to get it up to 13.

Masondo and the school's chairperson, Kgalema Motlanthe, held a media briefing on Monday to discuss plans for 2020 following the board's first meeting of the year.

"We've had a criteria in the past; through the eye of the needle, which I have said has become through the eye of the garage," said Masondo.

He told journalists the ANC would have a new criterion for its candidates to adhere to by March.

China model not suitable for SA

While the ANC is well-known for lauding its Chinese counterparts' approach to governance and politics, it seems its approach to political education is not a fit for South Africa.

Masondo said the party had visited numerous countries including China, Germany, Mozambique and Cuba to study models of political education when developing one suited for it.

He said China's model was not suited to the ANC because of different political conditions and the separation between state and party, which was the case in South Africa.

"We think the model we have here, the form of school is unique to our conditions. It is responding to the specific context we have in South Africa."

Masondo added Germany had interesting approaches to political education, with some targeted to parties and others to the general populace.

The ANC is also looking to partner with numerous institutions of higher learning and getting its qualifications accredited. The University of Johannesburg has already entered into a collaborative relationship with the school.

Political school not a panacea

Reflecting on criticism against the behaviour of certain ANC leaders, Masondo said some were not issues based on a lack of political education.

The question was asked on the back of the ANC distancing itself from comments made by MP and former North West premier Supra Mahumapelo who said the party would never vote with the opposition in a bid brought to remove the Public Protector.

The motion to remove advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane from her position was brought to Parliament by the DA, which has since set in place rules to deal with such an issue.

Mkhwebane has been seen by some as gunning for President Cyril Ramaphosa and his allies, while others like Mahumapelo have praised her.

Several of her findings have also been found wanting by the courts, with the highest court in the land even going as far as slapping her with a personal costs order.

"If we entrench this political education, even among members, then members will be able to question and say as a leader what you are doing is not right," said Masondo.

He added by building critical mass and a culture of democracy, democratic debate would have an impact.

Read more on:    anc  |  david masondo  |  politics
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