Nyameka Mguzulo, Agang SA Youth national convenor.

Cape Town -

Former Cape Town ANC Youth League member Nyameka Mguzulo has risen to the top of Agang SA’s leadership - in less than two months since joining the party.

The 23-year-old, from Langa in Cape Town, was elected as the national convener for Agang SA Youth Forum during the party’s manifesto launch in Atteridgeville, Gauteng on Saturday.

She also serves on the party’s national executive.

Mguzulo served on the Dullah Omar ANCYL regional task team until the end of January before she resigned.

She was also on the provincial young women’s desk for the ANC Women’s League in Cape Town.

Mguzulo said she joined Agang because she became disillusioned with the way structures were being rebuilt in the ANCYL after it was disbanded last year.

“We were doing the same things. Building the same structures, with the same factions, but only different faces.”

When Mguzulo left, ANCYL regional co-ordinator Akhona Jonginamba warned her it was “very cold” outside the party.

He said Mguzulo cited “personal reasons a week before she defected to join Agang”. The ANCYL said they were unfazed by her resignation as they were focusing on building the youth league.

On Sunday, Mguzulo said she joined Agang because it had a strong woman as a leader (Mamphela Ramphele), who she could identify with.

“The party also didn’t have any baggage. It wasn’t plagued by corruption.”

Mguzulo said her focus before the election was to do voter education among young people.

“Young people are ignorant of the power of a single vote.

“They don’t realise they can bring change,” she said.

Last weekend, Mguzulo was also elected deputy provincial secretary of Agang in the Western Cape.

The party’s 350 members in the province held its first elective provincial conference in Gugulethu last Saturday.

Former United Independent Front (UIF) leader Mzwandile Manjiya was elected Agang provincial chairman.

Manjiya was elected to the Western Cape Provincial Legislature as an MPL for the Independent Democrats (ID) in 2004, but crossed the floor to form the UIF.

The UIF only received 1 178 votes during the 2009 general elections in the province.

Manjiya said he had started a business in Kraaifontein in the past five years, but was ready to return to politics.

He said all the UIF members had joined Agang.

Former Stellenbosch businessman Sandile Eland was elected Agang’s provincial secretary in the Western Cape.

He is a former board member of Cape Town Routes Unlimited and assisted with the establishment of Cope in the province.

Other provincial leaders are Agang deputy chairman Andrew Arnolds.

He was with the ACDP previously and was a deputy mayor of the City of Cape Town.

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Cape Times