Bold defiance against Mantashe in ANC Nelson Mandela Bay race

2017-03-11 21:56

Cape Town – In bold defiance of a national directive, Andile Lungisa has accepted his nomination for the ANC regional leadership in Nelson Mandela Bay.

Just hours after Lungisa said he would be pulling out of the race, he accepted the nomination following intense deliberations with delegates.

Delegates spent two hours discussing a letter from Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe, which detailed reasons why members could not be in two leadership positions.

In his letter, Mantashe reminded members of a resolution made in the 53rd National Congress, where members would not be allowed to serve simultaneously in more than one constitutional structure.

"We have consistently interpreted this as prohibiting comrades from higher organisations of the ANC from contesting positions in lower organs," Mantashe wrote.

An ANC official paging through the party's constitution as delegates argue over Andile Lungisa's candidacy. (Thulani Gqirana/News24) 

The nominees were announced on day two of the regional congress, which is running more than six hours late.

Cheers and whistling greeted the announcement of Lungisa’s decision.

Mindful of ANC constitution

Other candidates are Tony Duba, who is running for chairperson as well.

Phumzile Tshuni and Wandisile Jikeka are standing for regional secretary, while Nontando Nikani and Desiree Davids are competing for the deputy secretary position.

Cedric Peterson and Mbulelo Bidani are vying for the treasurer position.

Even as congress delegates prepared to vote, there were still a lot of disgruntled members who were opposed to Lungisa’s candidacy.

A delegate said they needed to be mindful of the ANC constitution, even as they continued.

There were also concerns that the conference might be null and void, should they continue with the selection.

Delegates were so concerned about the ANC constitution that some were brandishing it, reading passages as they outlined the legality of the race.

After the nomination, delegates were raring to go to elections, with some suggesting a bypass of ballot papers and merely voting by show of hands.

In a statement, the ANC in the Eastern Cape said it was all systems go for the conference.

"The main task of the newly-elected leadership is to unite [the] ANC and prepare for 2019 General Elections," spokesperson Mlibo Qoboshiyane said.

Read more on:    anc  |  gwede mantashe  |  port elizabeth

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