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ANC Mzala Nxumalo elective conference results face nullification after RTT members' protests

The leadership, which is led by Sbusiso Mhlongo as regional chairperson, was elected over the weekend in Vryheid, in KwaZulu-Natal’s far north. File Picture: Bongiwe Mchunu

The leadership, which is led by Sbusiso Mhlongo as regional chairperson, was elected over the weekend in Vryheid, in KwaZulu-Natal’s far north. File Picture: Bongiwe Mchunu

Published May 4, 2022

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Durban - The newly elected leadership of the ANC’s Mzala Nxumalo (Zululand) region faces a short-lived stint in office after a protest that could nullify its victory was lodged with Luthuli House.

The leadership, which is led by Sbusiso Mhlongo as regional chairperson, was elected over the weekend in Vryheid, in KwaZulu-Natal’s far north.

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However, 13 members of the governing party in the region have written a letter to the acting secretary-general, Paul Mashatile, to complain that they were denied their right to vote because of a disputed resolution on the voting rights of 23 members of regional task teams (RTTs) in KZN.

Among the members who signed the letter to Mashatile at Luthuli House (ANC national headquarters) are Zakhele Buthelezi, the former regional secretary who lost to Ntokozo Nxumalo and Lawrence Dube, who in 2015 was behind the court case that nullified the provincial conference that elected the Sihle Zikalala-Super Zuma faction.

The letter was copied to the national top six, the national executive committee (NEC), the national working committee (NWC), Gwen Ramakgopa and to the KwaZulu-Natal provincial secretary, Mdumiseni Ntuli.

The main gripe of the challengers is that the region’s RTT was not allowed to vote, and the directive from Mashatile that RTT structures in the province should not vote should have not applied to them as no one in it was from a different region.

“When the conference was dealing with credentials and the instruction that RTT members would now be participating as non-voting delegates, I raised my hand and objected to the matter, but also proposed that the votes of RTT members should be quarantined in the interregnum. The basis of the objection was read to the conference, and several comrades in plenary seconded.

“The points raised in support of the motion were, among others, the following:  1. The letter coming from the Acting SG does not suggest that the NEC has reconvened and taken a different position to what was initially communicated in respect of the RTT members. 2. The letter speaks of those Comrades serving in the RTTs who are not within their jurisdiction in terms of membership, and that is not the case in this RTT,” reads the letter.

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They also argued that the ANC should have uniform rules since it was a unitary organisation where rules bound every member and structure.

“The ANC is a unitary organisation that passes resolutions that apply uniformly across provinces. 3. The NEC is the highest decision-making body between conferences and no other structure should alter the decisions other than another NEC meeting or a national conference. 4. The principles being clear, we would have preferred, and do propose, that the RTT vote and their votes be quarantined until such time that clarity has been given on the matter.”

The letter does not recommend a solution to the impasse and what should happen to the results. Instead, it expresses hope that the matter will be resolved.

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“We would therefore conclude that the right of ANC RTT members to vote in this regard was violated. We trust the appropriate resolution to correct the above impasse will be considered.”

The spokesperson of the ANC in KZN, Nhlakanipho Ntombela, said he was not aware of the letter, but if it was there, it would be discussed later this week when the provincial executive committee (PEC) met.

“I was not aware. Surely the PEC meeting over the weekend will look into the matter,” said Ntombela.

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