'Injustice': Dlamini-Zuma wants ANC step-aside rule to be amended at party's December conference

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President Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
President Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Deaan Vivier, Netwerk24
  • Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is willing to run for the ANC presidency if she meets the nominations threshold. 
  • The cooperative governance minister has raised concerns about the ANC's step-aside resolution.
  • She hopes the party's conference in December will remove the resolution which she believes has caused an injustice for criminally accused people coupled with a slow justice system. 

As one of the possible contenders for the ANC's leadership, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma does not believe the party is as strong as it should be. 

Dlamini-Zuma said the ANC had to work on strengthening its structures and delivery, especially on implementing ANC policies and resolutions. 

The cooperative governance and traditional affairs minister spoke to the SABC on Sunday.

Dlamini Zuma was nominated for the ANC presidency in her second attempt to lead the party. She lost out narrowly in 2017 to eventual winner Cyril Ramaphosa. 

On speaking about this loss, Dlamini-Zuma said she was, at the time, unhappy about it. 

While reflecting on the loss, she insinuated there might have been a reason behind it with the manipulation of branches, but she did not entirely address her suspicions. 

"I felt bad that I lost, but it's a contest. But of course, if you can go deep into why we lost, you would probably find something different, but I will leave it at that. But what has happened in the past has happened," she said.

The minister added she did not dwell on things she could not change. 

READ | 'Is that justice'? Dlamini-Zuma questions slow pace of probing corruption cases, cites eroding 'trust'

Dlamini-Zuma lost out on a crucial endorsement from her home region, eThekwini, which is backing former health minister Zweli Mkhize for the ANC presidency. 

Dlamini-Zuma said last week the choice of ANC branches mattered most ahead of the conference and not necessarily of pronouncements. 

While addressing a local government ethics forum in Pretoria, she spoke of what she believes was an injustice caused by a slow justice system. 

Dlamini-Zuma bemoaned criminal court cases of corruption-accused politicians and civil servants taking years to finalise. 

Her biggest concern was the delay the process placed on people's lives. 

READ | ANC eThekwini sets stage for Zweli Mkhize's political comeback campaign

While speaking to the SABC on Sunday, she added to these earlier remarks with her unhappiness with the ANC's step-aside resolution. 

Dlamini-Zuma said the resolution should be amended at the ANC conference in December because of its implementation.

"The problem with step aside is that you are charged, and then you step aside, but three years on, you are still waiting years for the trial to start. For me, that is injustice. I am saying justice must be done. Why do you arrest first and investigate for three years?

"By the time you arrest, you must be sure there is a case to answer, so the person is cleared or found guilty. I think the conference should look at the issue... as it stands, it is not right as it is being implemented," she added. 

The step-aside resolution was expected to be a divisive issue for the ANC at its national conference in December. 

The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal expressed its push for the resolution to be set aside. 

At the policy conference in July, the matter was explored to a small extent, with Ramaphosa saying concerns about the resolution's implementation would be heard. 

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