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Cape Town - The ANC’s top six officials are to meet the ANC Youth League on Monday in an attempt to fix the internal problems that have plagued the league since its president, Julius Malema, was expelled last year.
The league has faced a leadership vacuum since Malema’s expulsion and the suspension of its secretary-general, Sindiso Magaqa, and spokesman Floyd Shivambu. With any remaining hopes for their reinstatement buried at the ANC’s conference in December, the party has signalled its wish for the league to move on.
On Tuesday, ANC spokesman Keith Khoza said the league’s own constitution compelled it to hold a national general council if its president was removed. However, youth league spokeswoman Khusela Sangoni-Khawe said the league’s constitution made no such provisions, especially given the “unprecedented” decision by the ANC’s national disciplinary committee to expel a league president.
“The (youth league) constitution says in the event that the president is absent, the deputy president takes over the role of the president,” she said, alluding to the league’s preference to have its deputy president, Ronald Lamola, act in Malema’s place until its next national conference.
Instead, the league’s constitution called for a national general council to be held only if more than 50 percent of positions on its national executive committee were vacant. Sangoni-Khawe said the league had suggested that a national general council be held in the first half of this year.
Four positions on the 35-person executive committee are vacant.
The newly elected ANC national executive committee was mandated by the Mangaung conference to deal with the relationship between the party and the league. Sangoni-Khawe dismissed reports that the league’s relationship with the ANC had deteriorated last year, saying that they had merely disagreed with the “eroding of the autonomy of the youth league”.
The ANC national executive committee meets tomorrow and on Friday to elect its working committee. The NEC lekgotla then takes place from January 30 to February 2.