Who’s going to be Gauteng premier? ANC in Gauteng insists it will not be blackmailed

Gauteng ANC provincial chairperson Panyaza Lesufi gesturing on voting day in Tembisa. File Picture: Jonisayi Maromo/IOL

Gauteng ANC provincial chairperson Panyaza Lesufi gesturing on voting day in Tembisa. File Picture: Jonisayi Maromo/IOL

Published Jun 13, 2024


The African National Congress (ANC) in Gauteng on Thursday said it will be putting forward a premier candidate when the provincial legislature sits for the first time on Friday to elect key functionaries following the May 29 elections.

IOL reported on Thursday that while various political parties are scrambling to conclude coalition negotiation talks leading up to Friday’s swearing in of incoming members of Parliament, there is uncertainty over who will govern South Africa’s economic hub of Gauteng.

This comes after the ANC dipped below 50%, therefore falling short of governing the province.

The ANC has led Gauteng since the dawn of democracy. However, the party received 35% of the votes in the May 29 election — a great decline from the 2019 elections when it received 50.2%.

In an interview with broadcaster Newzroom Afrika, ANC spokesperson in Gauteng Lesego Makhubela said his party has reached some agreements with certain opposition parties, but the ANC in Gauteng led by provincial chair Panyaza Lesufi will not be held ransom in the negotiations.

ANC Gauteng provincial spokesperson, Lesego Makhubela. File Picture: Jonisayi Maromo/IOL

“What the PEC said is that we are not entering these discussions with salt in our hands, we are not going to be hunting with salt. We are not ambitious poodles. We have a responsibility to lead this province and ensure that the will of the people is respected,” Makhubela said.

“But we are not going to be blackmailed into doing that. We have also accepted an option of saying – when these talks are not going to be fruitful, are not going to reach a common point, we will gladly accept our role to sit in the opposition benches.”

Makhubela said the negotiations are going to continue even up to the doorstep of the provincial legislature, before it sits on Friday.

He said “commonality” has been found with majority of the political parties represented in the provincial legislature.

Regarding who will be the ANC Gauteng’s premier candidate, Makhubela said three candidates were submitted to the national executive committee of the ANC.

ANC Gauteng treasurer, Morakane Mosupyoe. File Picture: Masi Losi

“The ANC PEC recommended three names which is the provincial chairperson comrade Panyaza Lesufi, the treasurer of the province Morakane Mosupyoe, and the deputy secretary of the province Tasneem Motara,” Makhubela said.

“We submitted those names in order of priority and we will get feedback from the national executive committee, which will brief the national on all the premier candidates.”

ANC Gauteng deputy secretary Tasneem Motara is also on the premier candidates. File Picture: IOL/Screenshot

The ANC in Gauteng’s informal working relationship with the Economic Freedom Fighters has seemingly taken a turn for the worst, with Ekurhuleni Mayor Ekurhuleni Mayor Nkosindiphile Xhakaza, a member of the ANC, firing Gauteng EFF chair Nkululeko Dunga as member of the mayoral committee (MMC) for finance on Wednesday.

Executive Mayor of Ekurhuleni, Dr Nkosindiphile Xhakaza. File Picture: Jonisayi Maromo/IOL

IOL understands that the provincial ANC is holding advanced discussions with the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP).