African National Congress secretary general Ace Magashule. FILE PHOTO: ANA

Johannesburg -  Former African National Congress (ANC) presidents such as Jacob Zuma, Kgalema Motlanthe and Thabo Mbeki will be roped in at Luthuli House to assist the governing party ahead of the 2019 general elections.

The party had resolved at its elective conference last year to deploy more staff on a full-time basis at its headquarters in Johannesburg.

''We are strengthening political education and cadre deployment. We will be inviting former presidents of the ANC to assist us. We will be approaching the presidents, to ensure they are part of the body politic as we strengthen, renew and unite the ANC,'' secretary general Ace Magashule told reporters in Johannesburg.

The party faces the mammoth task of reclaiming lost ground following the bruising 2016 local government elections where it lost control of three key municipal metros to opposition parties. 

The full-time officials include former police minister Fikile Mbalula who is head of elections, former party spokesman Zizi Kodwa who is taking over as head of the ANC presidency, and Senzo Mchunu, the former KwaZulu-Natal premier who now heads the organising committee. 

Kodwa said as in accordance with the party resolutions, deployment of ANC members to government would be reduced in order to boost capacity at Luthuli House.

''You will from now on see more of members of the national executive committee here at the head office. It is our long held view that we need capacity at Luthuli House and drive agenda and programmes of the organisation. A strong team has been assembled here as you can see, to lead us towards an overwhelming victory in 2019,'' he said.

The party has billed 2018 as a year of renewal and unity, and aims to ''correct its wrongs and reconnect with the people.''

African News Agency/ANA