ANC goes the virtual route for its January 8 celebrations

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Jessie Duarte. Picture: Jabu Kumalo
Jessie Duarte. Picture: Jabu Kumalo


The second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has forced the ANC to go virtual to celebrate its 109th anniversary on January 8.

The celebrations are set for Seleteng village in Ga-Mphahlele, Limpopo. However, only 100 people will be allowed into the venue where the festivities will be held.

Other party members and the greater public have been urged to watch the event online as it will be broadcast live on the party’s various social media platforms.

Jessie Duarte, ANC deputy secretary-general, made the announcement on Friday from the party’s provincial headquarters, at Frans Mohlala House in Polokwane.

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Duarte said the wearing face masks, sanitising hands and social distancing would be strictly enforced during the week-long festivities in Limpopo to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

“The once normal mass movement of buses across provinces carrying people to the [January 8] celebrations will not be happening this year, even the great numbers of media practitioners that used to descend on these events will be drastically cut this year,” said Duarte.

She said there would be no events at stadiums, adding that President Cyril Ramaphosa would only address the 100 selected individuals, with everyone else participating virtually.

While these were drastic changes to what South African were used to, Duarte said the president’s golf day and gala dinner would go ahead, but “strict adherence to Covid-19 restrictions will be followed”.

The once normal mass movement of buses across provinces carrying people to the [January 8] celebrations will not be happening this year.
ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte

According to Duarte, the party had decided to take the celebrations to Limpopo to celebrate its second president, Sefako Makgatho, who was born in Ga-Mphahlele in 1861 and passed away in 1951.

Soviet Lekganyane, the provincial secretary, gave further details on the festivities from January 4-8 in Limpopo.

Lekganyane said the delegates would start arriving in the province on January 4.

The ANC’s top six arrive the following day.

“On January 6, the president’s golf day will take place at the Euphoria Golf Estate in Modimolle followed by a visit to Sekhukhune to the late isithwalandwe John Nkadimeng’s family,” he said, adding that on January 7 the ANC will commemorate other struggle icons.

Ramaphosa will then deliver the party’s agenda setting January 8 speech.


Juniour Khumalo 

Political Journalist

+27 11 713 9001
69 Kingsway Rd, Auckland Park
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