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WATCH: Zandile Gumede reclaims ANC eThekwini region, setting a provincial conference showdown

Published Apr 10, 2022

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Durban - Although she appeared to have been significantly weakened by the corruption allegations over her head, former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede has won the race to once again lead the ANC in the region by defeating Thabani Nyawose who is pro-Cyril Ramaphosa.

Gumede obtained 210 votes while Nyawose got 181.

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The defeat for Nyawose is a major setback for Sihle Zikalala’s bid to be re-elected KwaZulu-Natal provincial chairperson as the Gumede faction is hostile to his bid, claiming that he was behind the removal of the latter as the mayor of eThekwini in August 2019.

It is also another setback for the Ramaphosa campaign since the winning faction is openly RET and idolises former president Jacob Zuma. However, its influence in the national elections could be hampered by the fact that its membership has declined, meaning it will send fewer delegates than it did at the Nasrec conference in 2017.

In results that were announced on Sunday from the Durban ICC where the much-awaited elective was held, the Zandile Gumede slate had a clean sweep, resoundingly claiming all the top five region positions of chairperson, deputy chairperson, secretary, deputy secretary and treasurer.

In absentia because of the ANC’s step aside resolution which forbids members who are criminally charged from taking part in its activities, Gumede’s acceptance for her nomination was read out by one of her long - time loyalists, Zama Sokhabase.

Breaking the ice, the election agency sent two observers who told the delegates that the elections were free and fair and four votes from ward 20 were quarantined because there was a dispute, the results were then announced.

When Gumede was announced, her supporters broke into jubilation, celebrating the victory which at some point was in doubt because she is currently facing a corruption trial over the R320 million waste tender which was issued by the eThekwini municipality was she was still mayor.

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The position of deputy chair went to Thembo Ntuli who also overwhelmingly defeated Mthunzi Dlamini who was contesting under the Nyawose slate. Ntuli got 215 votes while Dlamini mustered 174 votes.

The position of regional secretary went to Musa Nciki who defeated Bheki Ntuli who was once a buddy of Gumede until there was a fallout. Nciki obtained 217 while Ntuli mustered 174 votes.

Another Zandile Gumede loyalist, Nkosenhle Madlala won big when he defeated Thanduxolo Sabelo, a former leader of the ANC youth league in the province. Madlala got 211 votes against Sabelo’s 179.

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In absentia because of the step aside resolution, Nomthandazo Shabalala was elected the regional treasurer by defeating Ntokozo Sibiya. Shabalala got 205 votes while her competitor got 186 votes.

Gumede has already indicated her readiness to abide by the ANC step aside resolution and not assume office until she has been cleared.

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