'Why are you trusting gossip?': ANC insists Eastern Cape conference is postponed

ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe.
ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe.
Daily Sun
  • The ANC in the Eastern Cape was scheduled to hold a conference this weekend. 
  • Infighting in the province, however, led to confusion about the conference going ahead as planned. 
  • The ANC, nationally and provincially, quashed rumours of a conference this weekend. 

The ANC, nationally and in the Eastern Cape, quashed rumours of a provincial conference this weekend. 

The province was expected to hold a conference from Friday to Sunday. 

But a decision was taken on Tuesday by the province's working committee, which halted the gathering. 

A meeting of the province's task team was expected to take place on Friday to discuss conference-related matters. 

News24 understands, from sources in the province, that the conference may be held next weekend - but, as yet, there has been no confirmation. 

The ANC in the Eastern Cape has seen a string of branch disputes ahead of the congress.

READ | Zandile Gumede defeats Thabani Nyawose in race for ANC eThekwini chair

The disputes have been cited as the reason why the conference could not take place. 

The spokesperson for the ANC Eastern Cape task team, Loyiso Magqashela, told News24 on Thursday the dispute committee was dealing with several disputes. 

"Without all these matters (disputes) being sorted, it is impossible. The disputes that branches have lodged, we first have to deal with that hurdle, and then the conference can proceed.

"The verification process for the conference has been concluded. The disputes from branches are handled at a national level by the national dispute resolution committee. The NDRC has been in session since Wednesday," Magqashela said. 

In response to media reports that the conference may indeed take place this weekend, ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe cautioned journalists against listening to gossip.

He said, according to the province, no conference will go ahead this weekend, which still stands. 

"Why are you trusting gossip? We have already explained that the conference is not going ahead," Mabe said on Thursday. 

News24 understands there were divisions in the province among opposing factions, leaving room for speculation about the conference. 

READ | ANC Eastern Cape declares readiness for elective congress despite fears of internal disputes

The provincial structure was disbanded in February, and a task team was appointed to prepare for the conference. 

The province last held a conference in 2017. 

The conference is expected to see a fierce battle over political control of the province between former chairperson Oscar Mabuyane and Babalo Madikizela, the former treasurer. 

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