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WATCH: Gwede Mantashe warns against factionalism in party at ANC Eastern Cape Conference

Published May 7, 2022

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Video by Bheki Radebe

Cape Town - ANC national chairperson Gwede Mantashe has warned against factionalism saying it was tearing the organisation apart.

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He told delegates at the ANC conference in the Eastern Cape on Saturday they must focus on policy and not who will lead the party.

He said it was wrong that each time the party goes into a conference delegates must fight as battles rage over leadership positions.

“What kind of an organisation is that? Beyond conferences we must be together. When we contest we are not enemies of one another,” said Mantashe.

He added that when new leaders are elected the losing candidate must congratulate the winning candidate.

“We are sending a message to delegates that this was not war,” he said.

He said the ANC cannot fight in a conference over elections of leaders.

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“These delegates cannot fight to death on the basis of elections. If that is what you are here for, you are crying at a wrong funeral. You cannot have a conference focusing on elections. The conference should focus on policy. If you focus on elections whoever wins it will be a hollow victory. I am appealing to you to focus on policies. Fighting one another as if there is no tomorrow, as if we are enemies of one another that is self-destructive,” said Mantashe.

He added that the ANC was a stronger faction than anyone.

People must work to build unity in the ANC.

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The ruling party was on a renewal project that should lead to unity.

It was in the interest of members of the party to build a strong organisation.

The factional battles would not serve anyone in the party.

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Mantashe also spoke out against the arrogance of ANC leaders who think society owes them.

He said leaders of the party must provide quality service to community service at local government level.

After the November elections last year the ANC lost the trust of the people, he said.

It was not because people hated them, but they were not happy.

“We are coming from local government elections. We did very badly. It’s not because all of a sudden people hate the ANC, it’s because we are not connecting with society. We as members of the ANC are arrogant. And the arrogance switches off all the people in society who believe in the ANC. If we give people quality service we will recover the lost trust. That trust deficit is an outcome of arrogance in dealing with society,” said Mantashe.

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