Former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)
Former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)

Opponents spurn Zandile Gumede's hand of reconciliation

By Bongani Hans Time of article published Feb 5, 2020

Share this article:

Durban - As the eThekwini regional conference draws closer, the war of words between competing camps has erupted, with former mayor Zandile Gumede’s faction claiming that her attempt to extend the olive branch for the sake of unity was rejected.

The faction at the weekend said Gumede, who seeks to clinch the position of chairperson in the ANC’s biggest region, had tried to negotiate unity by offering ANC branch leader Thabani Nyawose a regional deputy chairperson position - but Nyawose rejected the offer and instead stuck to contesting the chairperson position.

The conference is scheduled to take place in the first quarter of the year.

Gumede’s campaign spokesperson, Mzomuhle Dube, said Gumede’s initiative to bring unity to the region had been snubbed by Nyawose.

“This cannot be successful because we have Nyawose who has now sealed the top five, and additional positions (in his camp) have been filled.

“This is an indication of a sort of cartel approach, which says ‘this is our space and we don’t need anyone to come in’,” said Dube.

He said Gumede’s camp would continue to try to persuade Nyawose’s group to accept unity. He maintained that Gumede had started the unity process by bringing in businessman Musa Nciki as a candidate for the regional secretary position.

Dube said: “We are engaging each other to make sure nobody is left out because of the different views they hold.

“Comrades chose not to be part of a unity programme.”

Dube said Gumede’s supporters had so far only proposed that she be nominated for the chairperson candidacy.

They also want ANCYL regional chairperson Thembo Ntuli nominated as Gumede’s deputy and Nciki as the regional secretary, while the two remaining positions - deputy regional secretary and regional treasurer - are intended to be offered to the opposing faction.

“This is to avoid negotiating in bad faith,” he said.

Under Nyawose’s camp it is believed that Mthunzi Dlamini would contest to be his deputy; Bheki Ntuli would try to reclaim his regional secretary position; ANC Youth League secretary Thanduxolo Sabelo would try for the position as Ntuli’s deputy; and the regional treasurer would be contested by Ntokozo Sibiya.

Nyawose insisted that he would contest the chairperson position when nominated, but said he also supported unity. He said the offering of positions would only start after the branches had completed the nominations.

“The conference belongs to branches and not to Zandile (Gumede) or Nyawose, therefore you only start offering positions after the nominations.

“She (Gumede) has been misled to believe that there can be one individual leader who has the right to offer (positions) to others, whereas there is no such thing in the ANC,” said Nyawose.

Share this article:

Related Articles