Infighting intensifies in ANC Northern Cape region
Kimberley – ANC members in the ZF Mgcawu region are calling for the disbanding of branch executive committees and also want the ANC national executive committee (NEC) to initiate misconduct investigations against the ANC provincial secretary, Deshi Ngxanga, and the regional leadership.
The members are campaigning for Ngxanga to be replaced by Maruping Lekwene and for Sicelo Mbondezi to take over from Abraham Vosloo as the new regional chairperson.
Ngxanga said his home in Upington was stoned while his tyres were slashed on Monday evening after a branch general meeting was disrupted on Sunday.
He said while he was not injured, his family was traumatised by the incident.
“A group of about 120 people gathered outside my house and threatened me. Consequences will follow because a precedent cannot be set where members resort to violence and intimidation if they do not like the outcome of a branch meeting,” said Ngxanga.
ANC members in the region handed over a memorandum at the regional ANC offices in Upington on Wednesday and demanded a meeting with ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule.
“The provincial executive committee (PEC) in the Northern Cape has remained unconcerned with the plight of this region for many years, despite numerous requests for their guidance and assistance throughout this time,” said the members.
They want Magashule to investigate the alleged manipulation of membership during a branch general meeting that was held on March 15 in Upington.
They are also calling for provincial and national administrators to be assigned to supervise the Northern Cape.
“The NEC must nullify all branch general meetings that took place on March 15 and immediately disband the ZF Mgcawu branch and regional executive committee (REC). Branch and regional task teams should be elected to take the branches and region to conference as soon as possible. The NEC must initiate misconduct investigations against the provincial secretary and REC officials and the NEC must instruct the Northern Cape to convene regional and the provincial conference appropriately.”
The memorandum stated that the once-proud organisation had been “transformed into a monster by greedy, self-centred leaders”.
“Having written countless complaints to the ANC provincial executive committee since last year, and receiving no replies, we have now taken to the streets to express our righteous indignation ... We have had enough.”
Members claimed that the ANC branch membership was being manipulated.
“We have witnessed, and are victims of, the vile practices of intimidation, bribery, abuses of ANC disciplinary processes and hyper-factionalism. We have witnessed, and are indeed victims of, an authoritarian tyranny that has emerged over a decade in the region.
“We reject with contempt the continued manipulation of ANC branch general meetings by the ANC ZF Mgcawu regional leadership and the provincial secretary, Deshi Ngxanga, in order to maintain leadership positions in the ANC.”
The members claimed that fraudulent access was given to voters with no membership with the use of other member’s identities on March 15.
“Fraudulent lists were drawn up, while members who were not part of the retention campaign (to retain the current leadership) were prevented entry into the venue.
“The meetings did not fulfil any of the requirements set out in of the guidelines, which were brazenly violated. A factional election committee was elected to unduly favour the outcomes.”
Members pointed out that it was not procedural to hold the provincial elective conference before concluding the branch and regional conferences.
“It is a radical departure from ANC tradition and constitutionality that is indicative of hyper-factionalism.
“It is clear that the provincial secretary, the interim regional executive committee and interim branch executive committees cannot be trusted with overseeing the elective processes towards the regional and provincial conference. No outcome of elections or nominations overseen by these hyper-factionalists can be credible and acceptable.”
ANC regional chairperson Abraham Vosloo gave the assurance that all grievances listed in the memorandum would be adequately attended to by the branch and region.
“A report will be handed over to the Province. At this point it is not necessary to escalate the matter to the national office as it will be dealt with by the constituency,” said Vosloo.
He confirmed the incident that took place at the ANC provincial secretary’s home on Monday.
“At the moment the matter has been brought to the attention of the police. It is a potential threat when people go to the houses of leadership. We are reporting each matter to the police as it arises.”