Some senior ANC leaders come out in support of stalwarts

2017-11-17 18:16
ANC stalwarts. (File, Tshidi Madia, News24)

ANC stalwarts. (File, Tshidi Madia, News24)

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Johannesburg - Some ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) members, as well as its alliance partners, have shown full support for the veterans and stalwarts national consultative conference underway in Braamfontein.

This despite the ANC's top six refusing to recognise its validity.

During the first day of the national consultative conference, several key members of the ANC said that the older leaders needed to be heard.

ANC NEC members Pravin Gordhan and Derek Hanekom spoke highly of the veterans and stalwarts.

The two man, who were casualties during the midnight Cabinet reshuffle by President Jacob Zuma in March, said that the NEC had never disapproved of the conference.

"The president has his own views and he is the president of the ANC for now, but the fact of the matter [is that] we did not take a decision as the NEC that on Saturday just a week ago that we do not recognise this conference," Hanekom said.

The stalwarts boycotted the planned two days set aside for the consultative conference during the national policy conference this year, between June 30 and July 5. The former ANC leaders said their decision was based on the top six refusing to separate the policy conference from the consultative conference, as previously promised.

The stalwarts had requested the two days to review the state of the organisation, which they said was in "crisis".

Gordhan said that the stalwarts and veterans were leaders with a long tradition within the liberation movement and that their voice must be heard by the current leadership.

"Nobody has a monopoly on analysis of what is going in the country right now and equally, we need to hear different voices, different ideas," Gordhan said.

SACP second general secretary Solly Mapaila told News24 that it was critical for President Jacob Zuma and other party leaders to listen to their elders.

"When they raise their voices and say something is not right, they cannot be ignored. To do so, it’s actually an attack on our value system itself, because these people here, it’s a group that is an embodiment of this value system."

Some in attendance included NEC members Thulas Nxesi and Lindiwe Sisulu, Trevor Manuel, Mcebisi Jonas, and former president Thabo Mbeki.

Read more on:    anc  |  derek hanekom  |  pravin gordhan  |  johannesburg

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