ANC provincial chairman Sihle Zikalala File picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/ANA

Durban – An execution order was granted in the African National Congress (ANC) KwaZulu-Natal “rebels” case on Friday, meaning the party’s provincial leadership must vacate office.

The 27 provincial executive committee (PEC) members who were to attend the ruling party’s national conference – which starts on Saturday – will now be attending as branch delegates, not as PEC members.

The Pietermaritzburg High Court also granted the party leave to appeal its September ruling in which it found that the 2015 provincial conference was declared null and void. 

At that conference, current provincial chairman Sihle Zikalala ousted incumbent Senzo Mchunu.

Mchunu was fired as premier a few months later.

While the matter is on appeal, the September ruling stands. 

About an hour before the judgment was delivered, ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe said that the party was waiting for “proper communication” on the KZN judgment. 

“If it nullifies the PEC, it will only impact on the 27 PEC members, not delegates,” he said at a press briefing on the party’s state of readiness for the national conference.

The province has thrown its weight behind Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma to take the reins of the ruling party’s presidency, while the “rebels” are backing Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa

African News Agency/ANA