Durban – The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal says there is no need for the current leadership to step down."The elective conference is in 11 months, there is absolutely no need [for] leadership to step down," said provincial spokesperson Mdumiseni Ntuli on Tuesday.Ntuli was responding to calls made by former president Kgalema Motlanthe for the current leadership to step down during the party’s consultative conference.During a Power FM interview on Monday night, Motlanthe said that during the consultative conference planned for June, the current leaders must step down so that challenges facing the party can be discussed by members as equals to diagnose the problems and seek practical solutions.A group of ANC stalwarts have called for a consultative conference to deal with the challenges facing the party. The ANC National Executive Committee has agreed to dedicate the first two days of the June policy conference to the consultative conference. The stalwarts are still pushing for the two to be separated.On Tuesday Ntuli said: "The current environment requires that we close ranks and come out with a uniting leadership in December 2017."He said that there should be an approach that all ANC members adopt, instead of calling for the leadership to step down."We are faced by many challenges already and we should avoid acting recklessly and in a manner that deepens our challenges... We believe very strongly that these [Motlanthe's] sentiments do not contribute to uniting the ANC," he said.During the interview on Monday night, Motlanthe also said "there are many women capable of leading the ANC" when asked about former African Union Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma's possible candidacy.Motlanthe said factions pushing names of certain ANC leaders "take away the power of branches to elect who they wanted to lead the party, when it holds its national conference later this year".He also revealed that he was not keen to stand for the ANC's top post.