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KZN ANC Women’s League conference ‘rigged’

There is a question of legitimacy over the newly-elected ANC Women’s League of KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Supplied

There is a question of legitimacy over the newly-elected ANC Women’s League of KwaZulu-Natal. Picture: Supplied

Published Aug 15, 2023

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Durban — The KwaZulu-Natal ANC Women’s League elective conference could be nullified following a dispute lodged by some delegates who claimed it was rigged.

In a letter written by eThekwini ANC Women’s League regional co-ordinator Mpume Mabaso to Women’s League president Sisi Tolashe, and secretary-general Nokuthula Nqaba, she called for the nullification of the conference.

The conference, held last week (August 4-6) at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Convention Centre in Durban, was reportedly marred with drama and claims of gatekeeping, and about 27 delegates were prevented from voting.

On Monday, Mabaso said delegates first raised the issue of three separate registers for one conference. She said their dispute was never resolved, although the conference steering committee had promised to report back on it.

Mabaso said the 27 people who were prevented from voting had been accredited and verified and then participated in the conference. But when they went to vote they found their names were no longer on the voters roll.

Mabaso said she found it strange that the conference was allowed to continue without resolving the dispute, which was going to impact the legitimacy of the conference.

The second dispute she lodged was when the results were announced and the votes did not tally with the number of delegates who voted. She said the voted delegates were 1 219, but when counting was done there were either fewer or more than 1 219.

The voters roll used on the voting day was not certified or endorsed by the Regional Task Team co-ordinators, she said, which compromised the integrity of the voters roll.

Even during the voting tthe voting station was closed twice, she added.

Mabaso said 53 votes in total were unaccounted for, and in the position of deputy secretary, 37 votes were unaccounted for. Those in charge must explain what happened, since there were not spoilt votes or abstentions.

“This conference has many inconsistencies that could not be explained or corrected. I therefore submit that the national executive committee rejects the outcome of the 6th KwaZulu-Natal conference of the ANC Women’s League conference,” said Mabaso.

She said in the position of chairperson, Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza narrowly defeated Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Bongi Sithole-Moloi with three votes. But out of 1 219 voting delegates the number of votes was 1 222 which raised questions about the extra three “ghost” delegates.

ANCWL president Sisi Tolashe said the matter will be heard next week when her national executive committee meets.

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