Durban - President Cyril Ramaphosa's second-term ambitions have suffered another blow in KwaZulu-Natal following the election of pro-former president Jacob Zuma supporters in another regional conference.
The Harry Gwala regional conference which kicked-off on Saturday in Kokstad in the lower south coast re-elected Zamo Nxumalo as chairperson and Zenzele Msomi as secretary.
Nxumalo was a staunch backer for Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma (NDZ) towards the 54th ANC conference in 2017. In fact the entire regional leadership under Nxumalo in that time had thrown its weight behind NDZ slate in Nasrec. The support for Dlamini-Zuma was also informed by the fact that she hailed from the region as she is still has a home in Bulwer where she was born and raised.
VOTING underway at Harry Gwala regional conference in Kokstad, its current chairperson Zamo Nxumalo vs secretary Sindi Mjobe Msomi vying for chairperson position @DailyNewsSA pic.twitter.com/GZUtNG93wC— Willem Tho Phungula (@ThoWillem) April 9, 2022
Speaking to the Daily News moments after results on Saturday night, Nxumalo refused to be drawn in on who the region would back for president in the 55th ANC conference which is scheduled to be held in December in a province yet to be announced. He said his region did not discus names for provincial and national conferences but would make its position known when the time is right, adding that in the province they have not taken a decision which slate would be supported between Nomusa Dube-Ncube and current chairperson Sihle Zikalala.
Nxumalo defeated his former secretary Sindi Msomi who challenged for chairperson position by 196 to 96. Nxumalo's slate made a clean sweep taking all the top five positions. Deputy chairperson position went to Ray Langa while former regional ANC youth league secretary Qiniso Mnguni was elected as deputy secretary. Lindiwe Mjobo completed the top five as treasurer.
Harry Gwala regional conference chairperson position is being hotly contested by current secretary Sindi Majobe Gwala who is also current Dr Nkosazana Dlamini - Zuma local municipality mayor and current chairperson Zamo Nxumalo current district municipality mayor @DailyNewsSA pic.twitter.com/fzEZFsTq9x— Willem Tho Phungula (@ThoWillem) April 9, 2022
Msomi accepted the defeat and went up to the podium to congratulate the newly-elected leadership. She told the Daily News that she had campaigned hard and was expecting to win but accepted that delegates made their choice. She denied that her slate was going to back president Ramaphosa for the second-term, saying that they discourage that debate for the sake of unity before the conference however insiders said her slate was full of people who are sympathetic to the president.
Reacting to his re-election, Nxumalo said he was humbled by the trust the branches bestowed on him. He attributed the support to the respect he has for branches and processes of the party.