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Musa Dladla region finally meets the threshold to hold elective conference

The region, the fourth biggest in KwaZulu-Natal, was struggling to meet the requirement, forcing the ANC to keep on postponing the conference likely to be held in the port city of Richards Bay. Picture by: BHEKI RADEBE

The region, the fourth biggest in KwaZulu-Natal, was struggling to meet the requirement, forcing the ANC to keep on postponing the conference likely to be held in the port city of Richards Bay. Picture by: BHEKI RADEBE

Published May 10, 2022

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Durban - The ANC’s Musa Dladla (King Cetshwayo District) region has finally met the required threshold to convene a regional conference, setting the stage for a crucial battle ahead of the provincial conference in July.

The region, the fourth biggest in KwaZulu-Natal, was struggling to meet the requirement, forcing the ANC to keep on postponing the conference likely to be held in the port city of Richards Bay.

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Ahead of the conference, the regional task team co-ordinator, Tholi Gwala, who is also the former regional secretary, gave branches that had failed to convene their biennial branch general meetings (BBGMs) one last chance to do so.

“ANC Musa Dladla region has reached its 70% threshold as per the guidelines to convene the 8th regional conference. Branches must note that delegates will be allocated to all qualifying branches proportionate to the membership of each branch and in line with the ANC constitution, also those who have convened their BBGMs successfully and have been verified by the ANC Office Organising Unit.

“After Sunday, May 8, 2022, no BBGMs will be convened for conference purposes, except those instructed either by the provincial or national dispute resolution committee to re-run,” Gwala said.

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In the upcoming elective conference, Thembeka Mchunu, the wife of Cyril Ramaphosa loyalist, Senzo Mchunu, will be contesting against a slate led by former chair Mdu Mhlongo.

Mchunu is leading a slate that includes Gwala as her deputy chairperson and Lindo Phungula (the immediate past district mayor of King Cetshwayo) as regional treasurer.

In the last regional leadership, Mchunu (Thembeka) was the deputy regional chairperson under the chairpersonship of Mdu Mhlongo, the recently deposed mayor of the city of Umhlathuze Municipality (Richards Bay-Empangeni).

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Of note, in 2018, Mhlongo and Mchunu teamed up with Gwala (the current regional secretary) to replace the then regional leadership of the late Nonhle Mkhulisi, seen to be close to the NDZ/RET faction of the ANC.

Mhlongo’s slate includes former ANC youth leaders like Nathi Xulu, who is gunning for the position of regional secretary.

The spokesperson of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, Nhlakanipho Ntombela, confirmed that the region had been given the green light to host its conference.

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“Yes, we can confirm (that the conference is going ahead this weekend,” Ntombela said.

Some members of the ruling party in the region are predicting that the Mhlongo faction is likely to emerge victorious even though it recently had internal challenges.

“The Mhlongo faction has the number to win the conference even though it is facing divisions. There are those who don’t want Mhlongo, and on the day of the elections, they want to nominate Musa Cebekhulu as the chair of the faction. We are still not sure whether that will happen or work,” said one member, who is involved in lobbying ahead of the elective conference.

However, some believed that the Mchunu slate stood a better chance as it had Gwala, who, as the former regional secretary, had intimate knowledge of the voting blocs.

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