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Another KZN candidate enters the race to become ANC president

Sizani Dlamini-Dubazana said she would accept nominations for president position in the coming ANC national conference in December.

Sizani Dlamini-Dubazana said she would accept nominations for president position in the coming ANC national conference in December.

Published May 10, 2022


Durban - It seems that the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal will go to the national elective conference in December divided into two camps, after another senior member entered the presidential race.

Former MP and known ally of former president Jacob Zuma, Sizani Dlamini-Dubazana has agreed to contest the ANC president position, becoming the second party member to do so after Dr Zweli Mkhize, who has already received endorsement from various branches.

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It was expected, given the province’s desire to be represented in the party’s top six structure, that it would not have a choice but to back Mkhize.

Although Mkhize has not publicly talked about his presidential bid, which is in line with the ANC tradition that bars members from doing so before the nomination process begins, he is widely known to be eyeing the position.

Both leaders have been criss-crossing the province, addressing regional and branch meetings with the aim of garnering support before the nomination process for national positions starts.

Speaking to the Daily News on Monday, Dlamini-Dubazana first confirmed she was a Zuma ally, saying she did not mind being labelled as such because the former president was her commander-in-chief in exile and as ANC president.

Dlamini-Dubazana, who hails from Nkumba village in Bulwer, the village where Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma was born and raised, also confirmed her availability for the president post or any other position in the ANC provided branches nominated her.

She explained that as per ANC tradition it was regarded as being rude to decline a branch nomination. She also confirmed that the Forest Town house where Zuma lived in Johannesburg belongs to her. At the weekend she received a resounding welcome from her ward in KwaDambuza where she currently lives.

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Shoti Zuma, the KwaDambuza ward councillor, who attended the meeting where Dlamini-Dubazana gave an address, said if branch members nominated her he would support her as a comrade from the branch.

Dr Zweli Mkhize is said to be eyeing the ANC president position in the coming national ANC conference. Photo: File

On concerns that both her and Mkhize were from the province and same region, Dlamini-Dubazana said she had no problem with Mkhize contesting the same position because in terms of the ANC any member who was in good standing could stand for any position as long as branches backed them.

“I do not think there will be a problem if we both get nominated for the same position because the ANC constitution allows any member of the party to contest if she or he is in good standing,” said Dlamini-Dubazana.

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One of Mkhize’s lobbyists, Simphiwe Blose, dismissed fears that by entering the presidential race Dlamini-Dubazana would derail Mkhize’s chances of getting a seat in the party’s powerful top six at the conference.

Blose, who headed newly elected eThekwini chairperson Zandile Gumede’s campaign, said he had not heard any branch or region talking about her. Even if she received a nomination he did not believe that would disturb Mkhize’s march to Luthuli House because many, if not all, regions were banking on him representing the province in the national top six structure.

The province could not afford to fail again, he said. As the province, they want Mkhize in the top six, regardless of which position he gets because they were against slate politics. “I am sure you have realised that Mkhize was not associated with any slate you have seen circulating; it is because we want unity in the movement. We have Mkhize as the province and we want other provinces to give us names, and we discuss and allocate positions.

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“It's the same strategy we are using for our provincial conference; we want each region to give us two people and we discuss the allocation of positions.”

Daily News