Cope president Mosioua Lekota, Deidre Carter, Member of Parliament, and Pakes Dikgetsi, Cope national chairperson. Picture: Soraya Crowie/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Johannesburg - Congress of the People (Cope) president Mosiuoa Lekota will enter the party’s second national congress, beginning in Bloemfontein on Friday, unopposed as the party seeks to elect new leadership and subsequently hit the campaign trail.

Cope spokesperson Dennis Bloem on Thursday confirmed that Lekota would be unopposed when 315 delegates from across the country converged on The Bon Hotel in the City of Roses for the two-day congress.

The delegates are made of provincial executive committees from all nine provinces, sending 25 members each, and the national executive committee represented by 50 members.

The party’s wings, the Cope Women’s Movement, Cope Youth Movement, Cope Business and Professionals and the Cope Students Movement, will each be represented by 10 delegates at the congress, confirmed Bloem.

“When it comes to the election of the leadership, every registered member, members in good standing, will be allowed to vote.

“We will be introducing electronic voting so people will sit in their houses and vote for those that they want to support,” Bloem said.

He said immediately at the end of Day 2 of the congress on Saturday, the party would start shifting its focus to its election campaign, with a date for the launch of its election manifesto to be announced soon.

“We are not going to have leadership struggles, but we are going to concentrate on our election campaign strategy and we are tightening up screws as we head into the election campaign,” Bloem said.

Following the 2014 general elections, Cope had only three seats in the National Assembly, a significant decrease from the 30 seats it had amassed during the 2009 elections.

With the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture resuming this week, the party recently called for law-enforcement authorities not to take lightly death threats against whistle-blower Angelo Agrizzi after he delivered no-holds-barred testimony before the commission. 

Political Bureau