Zuma slams youth league’s lobbying

President Jacob Zuma has criticised the ANC Youth League’s push for

a change in the ruling party’s top leadership structures.

“In the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC), which is the

highest decision-making body, there is a lot of youth there, so what are you

talking about?” asked Zuma in an interview with The Star.

He was responding to the ANC Youth League’s campaign for a

so-called generational mix in the NEC.

It was widely known that the youth league wanted its former leader,

Fikile Mbalula, now deputy police minister, to become secretary-general of the

ruling party, a position currently held by Gwede Mantashe.

“We have a system in the ANC on how to deal with the question of

lobbying and nomination ... so why introduce a new culture?” asked Zuma.

He said the lobbying for positions in the ANC despite instructions

not to do so, “is a huge thing that should be stopped”.

Asked about youth league leader Julius Malema’s statement that

Zuma’s second term as president of the country was not a given, he responded:

“Whatever statement the youth league made in this regard doesn’t bother me at

all, because it is not the youth league’s decision; it is the ANC’s

decision.

“We need to help them appreciate that it is the ANC that decides,”

said Zuma.

“I will never fight any succession battle. The ANC will decide. If

they say one term, why should I argue?”

Zuma also said in the interview that he would make sure that Malema

went to political school, as was ordered during his disciplinary hearing.

Malema received a two-year suspended sentence in May for bringing

the party into disrepute.

Malema was approached by The Star for comment on Zuma saying youth

leaders did not understand how the ANC operated.

Malema responded by saying: “It’s okay.”

The ruling party held its national general council meeting last

week, which was a midterm review of its policies drafted at its national

conference in Polokwane in 2007.

 
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