President Cyril Ramaphosa will use the commemoration of the ANC’s milestone 1969 Morogoro National Consultative Conference to enforce unity, said party deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte. File picture: ANA

Durban - President Cyril Ramaphosa will use the commemoration of the ANC’s milestone 1969 Morogoro National Consultative Conference to enforce unity and try to bury factionalism, said party deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte in a statement.

Duarte said on Wednesday that the ruling party was currently facing challenges similar to the ones it went through under the stewardship of Oliver Tambo before the conference that was held in Morogoro in Tanzania.  

She said the oldest liberation movement on the continent was facing challenges that came with being in exile, illegality, divisions and discontent. She said the conference, which was held between April 25 and May 1, marked the beginning of the renewal and revitalisation in the ANC.

As party of celebrating of the 50th conference, President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver the OR Tambo Memorial Lecture on Sunday afternoon at Naledi Community Hall in Soweto.

“The lecture will be held on the birthday of former ANC President Oliver Reginald Tambo to pay tribute to his vital role in the Morogoro Conference and to recognise his unmatched contribution to the struggle for freedom in South Africa.

“The lecture marks the start of an intensified campaign to unite and renew the movement by ending factionalism, gatekeeping, vote-buying and corruption within its ranks by building active branches and developing a committed and capable cadreship, and mobilising communities to address their needs,” said Duarte.

She said as part of its renewal, the ANC requires its members to keep their memberships updated at all times, attend monthly branch meetings, attend political education sessions or complete an online course, recruit one new member a month, share ANC tweets and Facebook posts with friends and to be involved in community and development issues. 

The Morogoro conference was a milestone because it took a resolution to open its membership to all racial groups in the country. 

“Whereas Africans, Coloureds, Indians and progressive Whites had previously organised under separate banners, Morogoro was the moment at which the ANC formally became a non-racial organisation in form as well as content,” Duarte said.

ANC Treasurer-General Paul Mashatile will on Thursday afternoon give an address on Tambo in Ekurhuleni Region while on Saturday the party will hold a memorial service of struggle veteran Ebrahim Moolla who died while in exile in Toronto, Canada. This event will be addressed by former minister Essop Pahad, who is a family member and friend of Moolla, and Gauteng ANC chairperson David Makhura.

Political Bureau