Mabuza’s crown up for grabs as contenders queue up

David Mabuza during the ANC National Conference at Nasrec. Picture: Elizabeth Sejake/Rapport
David Mabuza during the ANC National Conference at Nasrec. Picture: Elizabeth Sejake/Rapport

The battle to succeed former Mpumalanga ANC chairperson, David Mabuza, continues with two former top six officials throwing their names in the hat.

Mabuza was elected as ANC deputy president in December at the party’s elective conference. He remains Mpumalanga premier pending a rumoured shake-up at national level that may see President Jacob Zuma resigning before the end of his term in 2019.

This week, former Mpumalanga ANC deputy chairperson David Dube was unveiled as the right candidate to replace Mabuza when the provincial general council sits on April 6. On Sunday, the Ward 8 branch in Belfast said it would support former provincial secretary, Lucky Ndinisa, to take over as provincial ANC chairperson.

READ: Warrent of arrest against DD Mabuza

Dube deputised Mabuza from 2009 to 2012 and is a legislature member. Ndinisa served as secretary from 2008 until 2016 when Mabuza was re-elected for a third term as chairperson. Ndinisa also serves as an ANC provincial executive committee member.

Dube was part of the Mpumalanga core team that campaigned for Cyril Ramaphosa to ascend to the ANC presidency.

Dube’s campaign manager, Sello Shai, said: “Comrade David Dube is a product of the CR17 [Ramaphosa’s election campaign] crusade, a former leader of the CR17 provincial core, who will make sure that the province he leads fully support President Ramaphosa’s programme of regaining the ANC’s lost glory, respect, dignity and positive image of the country”.

Dube, Ndinisa and current provincial ANC secretary, Mandla Ndlovu, are the three names that have been publicised and confirmed by lobbyists. However, other names include that of member of Parliament, Fish Mahlalela, and his national assembly colleague, Cathy Dlamini. Human settlements head, Peter Nyoni, has also launched his campaign. Nyoni was also part of Ramaphosa’s campaign.

READ: Nine contenders for Mabuza's throne

The list of contenders has been whittled down because MECs Pat Ngomana (safety and security), Sasekani Manzini (public works) and Speedy Mashilo (human settlements) were withdrawn by their lobbyists in Ndlovu’s favour.

Ngomana will stand as secretary, and Mashilo as deputy chairperson, while Manzini will remain in the provincial executive committee. The deputy chairperson’s position has also been left vacant after Violet Siwela was elected into the national executive committee.

Mahlalela was Ramaphosa’s campaign provincial convenor. The mention of both his and Dube’s names indicates cracks in the Ramaphosa camp.

READ: Factional, divisive. No unity in race for Mpumalanga ANC chair position

The divisions, however, go as far as showing that Mabuza leaves a troubled province. Mabuza campaigned for unity of the organization before the Nasrec conference, and he was of the view that delegates should elect new leaders on consensus. He was defeated, but delegates did elect the top six and additional national executive committee members from both Ramaphosa’s and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma’s camps.

Sizwe sama Yende
City Press
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